LAKE OF THE OZARKS, Mo. – After falling short of the Guinness world record in June of 2021, patrons are preparing for a second attempt at organizing the world’s largest boat parade at the Lake of the Ozarks this summer.
Malaysia holds the current world record with 1,180 recorded boats in 2014.
One of the event organizers and Executive Director of the Tri-County Lodging Association Lagina Fitzpatrick told The Heartlander that the lengthy process of applying to Guinness Records foiled last year’s attempt. By the time the parade organizers received an answer from Guinness in 2021, the boat parade committee had merely three weeks to market and advertise the event.
Fitzpatrick believes the lack of marketing was the primary reason for falling short of the record and says that although organizers had a short-time frame for marketing, over 600 boats were still entered into the parade.
“We have 54,000 acres of waterway here at the lake, so it makes sense to bring that record home to Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri and the United States,” Fitzpatrick said. “This will be great exposure. Obviously the Guinness World Record has an international platform.”
Fitzpatrick said last summer’s boat parade was still a success and raised money for 2021’s Bicentennial fireworks celebration at the lake.
In order to better maintain the wake and idle boat speeds, the parade is moving to the Grand Glaize Arm of Lake of the Ozarks. The entire event will be a no wake zone until the final stretch of the parade where boats will exit under the Grand Glaize Bridge.
Fitzpatrick assures the public that this year’s boat parade will be even more secure as they are expecting many more boats and attendees.
“Everybody wants to make sure it’s a safe event,” she said. “That’s a lot of boats on the water and a lot of people. We have 12 safety boats that are going to be on the water. We have the water patrol and everything. The buzz is good. Everyone’s excited about it.”
The extra safety boats are being provided by the Lake of the Ozarks Water Safety Council. After all expenses are paid, the remaining proceeds will go to benefit the safety council for ensuring a fun and safe event.
This year’s boat parade and world record attempt is set for June 11 at 11 a.m. The Guinness Book of World Records will send a judicator to oversee the event and verify the result.
2021’s parade fee of $50 per boat has been reduced to $20 per vessel for this year’s event. Interested boaters are encouraged to register here. Registrants will receive a commemorative flag which must be displayed during the race.
Additional sponsors are needed for the event and are encouraged to contact Lagina Fitzpatrick at 573-348-0111.