50 To 60 Boats Pull Up To Old Man Frank’s For July 4th Regatta
by James Coulter
Old Man Frank’s usually draws in big turnouts over the weekend, but they saw an especially patriotic turnout during their July 4th Regatta on Saturday.
Despite dark rain clouds and fear of COVID-19 looming over everyone’s heads, more than 50 to 60 boats pulled up near the docks of Old Man Frank’s along Lake Howard in Winter Haven to celebrate America’s birthday.
On their boats, attendees proudly waved their stars and stripes, took a dip in the cool lake waters, and listened as a live band played country music from the deck of the local bar and eatery.
Several bar patrons even gathered on the patio, all while practicing social distancing, to enjoy the good music, camaraderie, and the otherwise good weather save for the occasional downpour.
Joey Foley and his bandmates from Aggie Road performed that afternoon, playing covers of their favorite rock and country songs. He and his band have been playing at Old Man Franks for many years, and they often perform there at least once a month.
“Every weekend is a big weekend here on the Chain of Lakes,” Foley said. “4th of July is especially big. There’s a lot of boaters and families out here, it is a great event.”
Foley loves the atmosphere at Old Man Frank’s. The lakeside bar not only has an outdoor patio to accommodate outdoor eating, but also a special stage area for live bands to play near the water and docks. Such a setting was especially fitting for the 4th of July celebration that weekend.
“We are grateful to get to live in this country and do what we enjoy doing every weekend and having a blast,” he said. “It is always great to perform at the 4th of July, as a musician, if you are not playing on the 4th, there must be something wrong with you. So we are glad to be here, it is so great to be a part of our country today, and doing it all out here for friends and family.”