Be prepared to lose some sleep, but gain a lot of fun! Starting July 19 through the 23, is the huge, loud, exciting annual Festival of the Lakes in Hammond!
The festival is a filled with concerts taking over the night, as games and family-focused activities take over the day! Enjoy live music, great food and drinks, more fireworks, carnival rides and a party you will still be thinking about come October.
The biggest news? Hammond Mayor Thomas McDermott announced the famed rap star Flo Rida will be headlining the Festival, playing alongside Chicago rap star, Twista at the Pavilion at Wolf Lake on Saturday, July 22. The 2017 event is to begin soon, so let’s see what you can start looking forward to!
Day 1: Wednesday, July 19 – The festival kicks off with the band, Kool & the Gang, starting at 9 p.m., with opening acts performed by Dick Diamond & The Dusters starting at 7 p.m. Kool & The Gang has sold over 70 million albums worldwide and influenced the music of three generations with songs like Celebration, Cherish, Jungle Boogie, Summer Madness and Open Sesame.
Day 2: Thursday, July 20 – Bush is the main headliner of the evening, starting at 9 p.m. and following the opening act performed by The Crawpuppies. Bush’s lead vocalist, guitarist and main songwriter, Gavin Rossdale has sold close to 20 million records in the U.S. and Canada alone and with the band, they have several #1 hits including “Comedown,” “Glycerine,” and “Machinehead.”
Day 3: Friday, July 21 – The band Limp Bizkit, an American rap, rock band from Florida, known for the lead vocalist’s angry vocal delivery and the odd, sonic experimentation performed by one of the band members. They will also start at 9 p.m. after the opening act by Less Than Human.
- 8 a.m.: Golf Scramble at Lost Marsh Gold Course at 1001 129th Street, Hammond. Event details include prizes for 1st and 2nd place, closest to the pin, and longest drive. Skins Game available for entry and there will be an award presentation following the round. Lunch and complimentary gift bag to each participant. The cost is $400 per foursome. For more information, call (219)853-6378 and read here.
- 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.: Senior Day includes participants age 55 & older receiving a free lunch, goody bag (while they last), and musical entertainment by the Pete Carlo Trio at the main beer garden tent.
- 10:30 p.m.: The Fireworks Show, an amazing display of colors, booms, and bangs thrown by Mad Bomber Fireworks, will follow the concert!
Day 4: Saturday, July 22 – Flo Rida, a rapper with a long list of hits, is also known for starting a nonprofit foundation called “Big Dreams for Kids” that is committed to inspiring future leaders. He will follow Twista and Liptik.
- 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.: The annual Festival of the Lakes Fishing Derby will take place on the shores of Wolf Lake. The entry fee is a $1 donation fee that supports the Wolf Lake Stocking. Children age 15 and under get free equipment (while supplies last) and are welcome to listen to a free kids fishing seminar at 10 a.m. Trophies are awarded to those under 12 and 12 and older for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places for the largest bass, walleye, and pan fish catch! On shore fishing alone. Call (219) 989-0575 or read more here.
- 8 a.m.: Kathleen Pucalik Memorial 5k Run/Walk/Splash is a great way to start the day! Runners and walkers invited, plus children can enter their own race at 8:15 a.m. Early registration costs $20 and race day costs are $25 and awards are given to top three female and male finishers of age groups and t-shirts are reserved for participants entered by July 8. Click here for more details.
- 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.: The Special Persons Day, a time dedicated for those with disabilities, will take place at Wolf Lake Memorial Park. A free lunch, carnival rides, and goody bags are offered! Read here for more.
- 10 a.m. – 3:45 p.m.: Kids Day at the Aquatic Play Center at the Aquatic Play Center welcome kids ages 12 and younger can cool off and enjoy a great day at the Splash Pad! The cost is free.
- 10:30 p.m.: Another spectacular Mad Bomber Fireworks is scheduled to light up the night sky!
Day 5: Sunday, July 23 – The final headliner band will be performed by Intocable following the opening act by Banda Cuisillos. Intocable, or in English Untouchable, is an American Norteño musical group from Zapata, Texas, which fuses Tejano’s robust conjunto and Norteño folk rhythms with a pop balladry.
- 12 p.m. – 3 p.m.: The Hot Rod and Custom Bike Show invites all car enthusiasts to check out all the cars on display that will include monster trucks, funny cars, and a custom chopper! There will be dash plaques, door prizes, games, rides, awards and trophies, and more! Click here for registration details.
- 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.: Polka Party with The Music Company ends the festival with refreshments and authentic polish food prepared by Cavalier Inn of Hammond. There will be free parking and admission, but don’t forget your lawn chairs and blankets! The group will perform at The Hammond Marina.
All concerts and firework shows are free to the public, but participants must pay for parking.
A Parking Pass includes $25.00 per vehicle for Single Day parking and a three-Day Parking pass is $60 per vehicle. A Motorcycle Single Day pass is $15.00 and must park in the designated areas. There will be no street parking!
For the carnival, you can purchase a Mega Pass for $50.00 or for Single Day Unlimited Rides and Individual Carnival Rides. Check out all tickets costs and details here.
And, head to the Festival of the Lakes Guidebook to find out more information on artist submissions, contests and sweepstakes, the weather policy, hours and security information, and all of the delicious food and drink vendors! Festival of the Lakes has been around since 1984, and was first called AugustFest. The popular five-day festival celebrates Lake Michigan, Wolf Lake, and George Lake, and draws more than 50,000 locals and visitors to the area. VIP passes are $50.00 per person per concert and there are an UNLIMITED number of VIP Experience passes! All the great conveniences and special access grants can be found here!
Whether this is your first time to the festival or a tradition you enjoy each year, the Festival of the Lakes is a great family-friendly celebration to wind down the summer in Northwest Indiana!