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Michelle Gardia
Lake Havasu City CVB

Hot Winter Events in Lake Havasu City

Published: November 07, 2011

Vintage VWs, Hot Air Balloons, BBQ, Brews and Cowboys

Special sights, sounds and flavors unique to this corner of the southwest bordering California and Nevada abound as everyone from bronco bustin’ cowboys to Volkswagen and BBQ fanatics arrive to enjoy the mild desert winter. When the rest of the U.S. is chillin’, folks in Lake Havasu City will be grillin’ … and participating in a host of other high season activities. Here’s a look at the top events this winter.

January 2012

  • “Buses by the Bridge” celebrates VW Buses (Jan. 13-15, Windsor Beach 4 at Lake Havasu State Park) – The VW Bulli will always be an icon of 1960s hippie culture, and now the London Bridge Vintage Volkswagen Bus Show and Camp Out is back on the scene. Camping is not only optional, it’s practically a necessity as visitors descend on Lake Havasu City with like-minded microbus lovers to enjoy fellowship, free tacos, and the warm Arizona sun sparkling off glistening sheet metal. Money raised from this event is earmarked for local children's charities. (
  • 2nd Annual Havasu Island Balloon Festival & Fair (Jan. 19-22, Island Golf Course at Nautical Beachfront Resort) – Have a real “screen saver moment” as the view over Lake Havasu fills with the colorful shapes of hot air balloons. The mass ascension happens at 8 a.m. on Jan. 19, as the Vendors and Art Village opens to bring all manner of art and children’s activities to the earthbound masses. Tethered balloon rides will be available, as will the marvelous sight of the Field of Fire – a night glow where tethered balloons are lit up from within to create huge nighttime lanterns. (
  • Lake Havasu Music, Brews and BBQ Championship (Jan. 27-28, Windsor Beach 4 at Lake Havasu State Park) – Come savor the mouthwatering aromas of hickory-stoked fires touting some of the country’s best barbecued chicken, beef, and pork in this Kansas City Barbeque Society-sanctioned event. Over one hundred competitors and 50-plus vendors will be in attendance, with special events like cooking classes by 25-time champion Kelly Wertz and music by the aptly-named Captain Cardiac and the Coronaries. Proceeds benefit the Interagency Food Bank. (
  • Grand Canyon Pro Rodeo and Little Delbert Days (Jan. 28-29, SARA Park) – Come out to the new Lake Havasu Rodeo Grounds for the second year of Grand Canyon Pro Rodeo Association competition. Enjoy bareback riding, calf roping, and more – including a dinner dance on Jan. 28. Kids’ events at Little Delbert Days include calf and sheep riding, gold panning, bounce houses, cow jousting and a cupcake walk. (

February 2012

  • Western Winter Blast Pyrotechnics Show (Feb. 16-19, SARA Park) – Fireworks have amazed and delighted people for centuries. Come to Lake Havasu City to see firework displays and choreographed pyrotechnic shows. This trade show hosted by the Western Pyrotechnic Association attracts fireworks professionals from throughout the west, so these free shows may be the best you’ve ever seen. (
  • Lake Havasu Rockabilly Reunion (Feb. 17-19, Windsor 4 at Lake Havasu State Park) – Stiff blue denim, slicked back hair, a loud ’49 Mercury and music to match – that’s Rockabilly. It emerged in the early 1950s and is having a revival at Lake Havasu State Park. No fuelies (i.e. fuel-injected cars) are allowed at the vintage car and motorcycle show, and you may want to have your “do” done at the on-site 1950s hair salon before the pin-up girl contest. Thousands of greasers made it out last year to the greatest reunion west of the Mississippi, so come on out, Daddy-o. (
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About Lake Havasu City

Lake Havasu City, three hours driving time from Phoenix, 2-1/4 hours south of Las Vegas and four to five from the Los Angeles region, attracts 775,000 visitors a year thanks to its dry, desert weather, more than 300 sunny days a year, a range of restaurants and lodging, and a boatload of special events.

For more information on Lake Havasu City, Arizona’s only waterfront resort destination, including a 2014-15 calendar of events, visit or call 928-453-3444. Also find Lake Havasu City online at and Photos of dozens of images of local recreational activities, restaurants, lodging and scenery are available upon request.