Large crowds expected at Allatoona, Lanier for Fourth of July weekend

The Corps expects residents to flock to the shores of Allatoona and Lanier lakes to commemorate the three-day holiday weekend that kicks off Friday.
The Corps expects residents to flock to the shores of Allatoona and Lanier lakes to commemorate the three-day holiday weekend that kicks off Friday.

Two of North Georgia’s popular lakes are the go-to destination to celebrate the Fourth of July, and the Army Corps of Engineers says this weekend will be no different.

The Corps expects residents to flock to the shores of Allatoona and Lanier lakes to commemorate the three-day holiday weekend that kicks off Friday.

Hundreds of camping sites at Lake Lanier and Allatoona reopened in early June. All reservation slots at both locations have been booked through the weekend, said Cesar Yabor, chief of public affairs for the Army Corps of Engineers Mobile District.

“That’s probably going to stay the same,” he said. “I really don’t think anyone is going to drop their reservation at this time. People are even more eager to be outdoors when the opportunity has presented itself.”

The two lakes together offer over 1,000 campsites. Allatoona has 8 campgrounds and 576 camp sites, while Lanier has 7 campgrounds and 482 camp sites.

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The campgrounds were closed earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. Two Allatoona campgrounds — McKinney and Old Highway 41 No. 3 in Bartow County — remain closed due to issues not related to the pandemic, said Christopher Purvis, lead ranger at Allatoona Lake. McKinney is closed due to a sewer line project and the park attendants who were planning to run the Old Highway 41 site have “backed out,” Purvis said.

Day-use areas are also open, but Yabor said playgrounds and shelters at those locations remain closed. Boat ramps and beaches are also open for use, but visitors should plan on carpooling because parking will be limited, Purvis added.

“A lot of people come in two or three cars, and we are trying to get everyone to come in one,” he said.

Anyone who plans to get out on the water should “slow down” on the lake and wear their life jackets, Purvis added.

The Corps is encouraging visitors to practice social distancing and other safety guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control. Residents are encouraged to use hand sanitizer, maintain at least six feet of space between themselves and other parties, wear masks or face coverings and to stay home if they are sick. Signs will be posted throughout the sites reminding people of the guidelines.

“We want everyone to enjoy their visit and not get sick,” Yabor said.

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