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Michelle Gardia
Lake Havasu City CVB

Lake Havasu City Lights the Night for the Holidays

Published: October 14, 2011

Not too many desert towns feature miles of lakefront property, and that fact alone provides an idea of what a special place Lake Havasu City is for visitors. This fall, beer buddies, pretend pilots, boaters and monsters all converge on this desert oasis in the American southwest. As the holidays approach, there is truly nowhere in the world like Lake Havasu City and its full calendar of special events.

7th Annual Chillin’n Swillin Beer Festival, Nov. 5

The craft beer movement bubbles up in Lake Havasu City on Nov. 5 at the Rotary Park ballpark fields on Thompson Bay. Outstanding handcrafted beers will be available from such breweries as Big Sky Brewing, Coronado, Gordon Biersch, Moosehead, the local Mudshark Brewery, and many more. There is even a home brew competition to find America’s next top brewer. Chillin’n Swillin is a non-profit festival which supports many charities, so beer drinkers can rest assured their $25 ticket ($30 at the door) is earmarked for several good causes. (

25th Annual Seaplane Classic, Nov. 4 to 6

The London Bridge Seaplane Classic returns to mark a quarter century of floatin’ and flyin’ at Windsor 4, Lake Havasu State Park, Nov. 4 to 6. The Desert Hawks RC Club, host of the event, is a fun-lovin', donut-eatin' bunch who fly mostly in the early mornings and, for many, 7 days a week 365 days a year. The airplanes may be closer than they appear: they’re all scale replicas of actual seaplanes, like a Seawind 300C and DeHavilland Beaver, plus helicopters, jets and even small foam electric planes – all guided by remote control from the ground. Organizers call it – and who are we to say otherwise? – the “Southwest’s premier radio controlled float fly event.” (

Monster Bash Poker Run, Nov. 4 to 5

Lake Havasu City keeps Halloween alive and on the water Nov. 4 to 5 with a monster themed poker run. The party starts on Friday with registration and a lunch run to Havasu Springs so boaters can get their sea legs. The main event occurs Saturday when participants put on monster costumes and motor to checkpoints to pick up a playing card at each. The after party and costume awards show takes place that night after the run. This is guaranteed to be the only place along Arizona’s so-called West Coast to see Frankenstein at the helm. (

17th Annual Festival of Lights, Nov. 25

On November 25 the switch is flipped to begin the Festival of Lights, in which over 650,000 bulbs will light the famous London Bridge and the London Bridge Resort. The gleaming spectacle will be on display, free of charge, throughout the holidays. Light displays are programmed and choreographed to twinkle in time with holiday music, reflecting off the lake waters under a clear desert sky. Lake Havasu City is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the London Bridge going into service in the Arizona desert. The historic structure is considered the city’s signature attraction, the second most visited attraction in the state of Arizona, bested only by the Grand Canyon.  (

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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.