Annual tribute to fun in the sun supports the lake in Kenner

Back to the Beach

Good food, great music, local arts and crafts, a peek at antique cars, a volleyball tournament and even a road race — it’s all there at the 24th annual Back to the Beach Festival this weekend in Kenner’s Laketown.

Sponsored by the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, the festival, held at the end of Williams Boulevard along the lakefront starts at 3:30 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. Sunday. Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for students with a school ID and $4 for children 12 and under.

“ ‘Back to the Beach’ is our primary fundraiser and all the proceeds from it and our patron party (June 22) allows the Foundation to continue its essential programs such as water quality testing, coastal restoration, habitat preservation and public education, just to name a few,” said Angela Dorvin, events coordinator for LPBF. “The proceeds will also provide much needed funding for the continuation of the next phases of construction at the new Canal Lighthouse Museum and Education Center.”

On Saturday, things get underway with the ninth annual Beach Run/Walk. Registration for both events can be made prior to Saturday’s event or on Saturday beginning at 5:30 p.m. The cost is $25 for adults and $15 for youngsters 15 and under and seniors 65 and older.

The half-mile event begins at 6:30 p.m., followed by the two-mile walk/run at 6:45 p.m. Awards will be given to the top finishers in various categories.

To register in advance or for more information about the run/walk, call (504) 468-1488 or go online to http://www.NOLArunning.com

Also on Saturday, musical performers are Groovy 7 from 3:45 p.m. to 4:45 p.m.; The Yat Pack from 5:05 to 6:15 p.m.; Contraflow from 6:35 p.m. to 7:45 p.m.; Supercharger from 8:05 p.m. to 9:20 p.m.; and The Chee Weez from 9:40 p.m. to 11 p.m.

On Sunday, the 11th annual Back to the Beach Car show begins with registration at 8 a.m. Cars featured will include custom cars, streets rods, antique, classics and race cars.

For more information about the car show, call (504) 282-2862 or go to the website http://www.customcruiser.net.

Also on Sunday, a volleyball tournament sponsored by Coconut Beach will be held beginning at noon. Registration starts at 11 a.m. and the cost is $100 per team.

The music continues Sunday with Bobby Cure and the Summertime Blues from 11:45 a.m. to 1:10 p.m.; The Wiseguys from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.; The Boogie Men from 3:25 p.m. to 4:55 p.m.; The Bucktown All-Stars from 5:20 p.m. to 6:50 p.m.; and The Topcats from 7:15 p.m . to 8:45 p.m.

And in conjunction with the festival, the 16th annual Save our Lake and Coast Fishing Rodeo is Friday and Saturday.

Participants may fish in any areas including the bayous, rivers and tributaries of Lakes Pontchartrain, Maurepas, St. Catherine, Borgne and the Breton Sound.

The Lake Pontchartrain Basin includes 10,000 square miles of waterways within 16 parishes throughout the state.

Registration is $40 for the open division and $15 for the youth division, ages 10 to 15.

Awards will be presented in various categories during the Back to the Beach Festival at 6:15 p.m. Saturday.

Parking for Saturday and Sunday will be available on site for $5 and general parking will be available nearby at the Pontchartrain Center with a shuttle service provided to and from the festival.

For more information, call the festival and all the events supporting the festival, go to http://www.saveourlake.org or call the LPBF at (504) 836-2215.