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Centennial Lake Fest & Grand Opening of Staley Basin

July 2023 marks 100 Years of Lake Decatur! Please join us at the Centennial Lake Fest & grand opening of the “Staley Basin” – July 8 & 9, 2023. This event will feature tons of activities in the Marina and along the lake front. 100 Years of Lake Decatur is a collaboration between the City of Decatur, Decatur Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, Decatur Park District, and Staley Family Foundation. Join us to honor the first 100 years of Lake Decatur and build new connections for the community and the next 100 years.


Lake Fest scheduleopens IMAGE file


  • Lighted Boat Parade – July 7
    • Boats decorated with lights will circle the Lake on Friday night. The parade will begin shortly after dusk around 9 p.m. They will begin between Lost Bridge and the east shoreline in Basin 2 and make a loop around the shoreline in Basins 2, and 3.
  • Sailboat Regatta – July 8 & 9
    • The Commodore Decatur Yacht Club will host a sailboat clinic and two days of racing in Basin 2 with Flying Scots registered from across the country.
    • Clinic: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Races: Sat. 12 noon to 4 p.m. and Sun. 10 a.m. to 12 noon.
  • Staley Basin Dedication – July 8
    • An official ceremony will be held on the main stage to re-name Basin 3 as the Staley Basin, recognizing the vision and influence of the A.E. Staley family.
    • Time: 4 p.m.
  • Family Fun – July 8 & 9
    • Family-friendly activities for kids and adults with Bounce Houses, Touch A Truck, and much more!
  • Art & Vendor Fair – July 8 & 9
    • Local artisans and vendors will display their work during festival hours. They will be located along the boardwalk between the Beach House and the Devon Amphitheater. Presented by the Decatur Area Arts Council.
  • Fishing Competition – July 8 & 9
    • A two-day fishing tournament will take place during festival hours. Open to all skill levels. Fishing poles and other equipment will be available to use. Other details TBA.
  • Guinness World Record Attempt! – July 9
    • We have partnered with the Boys & Girls Club of Decatur to attempt to beat the world record of plastic boats launched simultaneously. The record stands at under 330 boats; we think we can beat that! Launch will be at the beach area near the Beach House. The boats will be retrieved immediately following the launch.
    • Launch time: 2 p.m.
  • Yoga at Lake Fest – July 8
    • Gentle Yoga Class with Tara Drake of Yoga hOMe at the old Amphitheater. Registration info opens in a new windowhere
    • Time: 12 noon
  • opens in a new windowCar Showopens IMAGE file – July 8
    • FREE car show sponsored by Decatur Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, Chevrolet Hall of Fame, and Vinnie’s Barbee Q
    • Time: 12 – 4 p.m.


Live Music Lineup

Our Music Director has scheduled a lineup of amazing artists and almost all are local! A main stage will be in the parking lot between the Beach House and the Lake Management office, and a smaller stage for acoustic acts will be near the Art Fair east of the Beach House.

  • July 8 – Main Stage
    • Said Echo – Alternative Rock (original showcase)
    • Free Range Youth – Alternative Rock (original showcase)
    • Structurally Sound – Cover band/pop-Top 40
    • Foo Gang – Positive Hip Hop/Soul (original showcase)
    • Drew Cagle and the Reputation – Original up and coming Decatur act
  • July 8 – Acoustic Stage
    • The Bessers – Acoustic alternative folk
    • Ashley Riley – Singer songwriter
    • Matt Carter – Acoustic set


  • July 9 – Main Stage
    • Lady Luck – Legendary local cover band/classic rock
    • Puff Puff Poseidon – Original showcase
    • Harlem Hayfield – Original showcase
    • No Backup Plans – Local hard rock/alternative cover band
  • July 9 – Acoustic Stage
    • Tristen Warnsley – Positive vibe acoustic folk/jam
    • Oatmilk (Crimson June) – Singer songwriter acoustic folk


We are very thankful to our partner – the Staley Family Foundation. Without the vision of A. E. Staley, there may not have been a lake at all! We thank the Staley Family for supporting this event and future watershed initiatives to protect our Lake for the next 100 years!

*attraction locations subject to change


Centennial Lake Fest mapopens IMAGE file


Follow our Facebook event page! – opens in a new windowwww.facebook.com/CentennialLakeFest/


100 Years of History

As you can imagine, there is a lot of history that happened throughout the first 100 years of Lake Decatur’s existence. We will honor that history with weekly posts on the opens in a new windowCity of Decatur’s Facebook page up until the Centennial Lake Fest in July. They will also be posted on our website opens in a new windowhere.

The weekly posts certainly won’t cover all the history! For additional historical posts, and to share your own, check out our separate opens in a new windowFacebook group.

If you are unable to upload your pictures/documents, you can visit the Staley Museum or the Decatur Public Library History Room during regular business hours and they will help with your Lake history submission.


Get Involved!

Wanna be Involved? Volunteer? Belong to a Civic Organization? Have a Food Truck?


Please note: your application/email to be a part of our festival is not a guarantee that you are booked. We are getting lots of inquiries and cannot possibly accommodate every person/group. Thank you for your understanding!


*this page will be updated as more information is available*