Canoe Carnival

Canoe Carnival 2021 is a go!

Canoe Carnival will be held August 7, 2021.


Float Groups please find the required forms for registering your float below. Float registration is due by Friday, June 25th.

Since 1931, Canoe Carnival has been held during the first week of every August on Lower Aetna Lake.  Now it is routinely celebrated on the first Saturday of August. Each year float groups compete for the prizes in various divisions, as well as for grand prize. As Medford Lakes' main annual event, the Canoe Carnival week-long celebrations kick off with the Miss and Mr. Medford Lakes Pageant, the Canoe Carnival Ball and Mardi Gras Night. With a parade of elaborately hand-built floats supported on one or two canoes, it is a spectacle unlike any other!


Miss and Mr. Medford Lakes Pageant

Every July, your favorite 15-18 year old colonists vie for the honor to be crowned the King and Queen of Canoe Carnival!  Candidates traditionally litter the town with signs, banners and pamphlets leading up to the election. The Miss and Mr. Medford Lakes Pageant is typically held at Beach 3 roughly two weeks prior to Canoe Carnival, but can be held at Neeta School if the weather is inclement.  Please keep an eye out on the Colony News to find out how to vote during the month of July.  Every Colony member is entitled to one vote.

Canoe Carnival Ball

Kick off a fun-filled Canoe Carnival week by attending the Canoe Carnival Ball at Medford Lakes Country Club. Float groups traditionally wear outfits complementing their float design and compete for the coveted spirit stick. Tickets are $25 per person or $45 couple or $50 at the door.  Advanced tickets can purchased starting in July at the Medford Lakes Colony Office.   

Mardi Gras Night

The night before Canoe Carnival grab your canoes, kayaks and paddle boats! All Lakers are welcome to float on Lower Aetna and get a sneak peak of what each float group has been working on all summer. Lakefront houses are decorated to the nines with lights!  Local bands are also hanging on the lake playing some great music!  

Canoe Carnival

On the night of the big event find your spot around Lower Aetna Lake to view the big event! Tickets for bleachers seats on the beach can be purchased in the Colony Office prior to Canoe Carnival. Colonists are welcome to set up their own chairs on the beach surrounding the bleachers starting at 4:00 pm the afternoon of Canoe Carnival. Details regarding road closures and traffic details can be found here, as well as on the Medford Lakes Police website. Additional details can be found in the Colony News leading up to the event. Be sure to arrive early to claim your seat and park nearby! Canoe Carnival kicks off at dusk, weather permitting.

Canoe Carnival Traffic Regulations 2019 - Click HERE!

Canoe Carnival 2019

It was a magnificent Canoe Carnival! Thank you to the Float Builders, the Canoe Carnival Committee, homeowners on Lower Aetna Lake and neighbors who hosted this amazing event, the Police & Fire Departments, EMTs, a great community and more.  Despite the heat making it a difficult year for building a Float; the Floats were amazing.  


Congratulations to the Winners

Grand Prize 
On the Rocks (OTR) - Christmas Spectacular


Shawnee Division Winners

1st Place:  Scrub Pines - Fat Bottomed Squirrel

2nd Place:  Gunnels Deep - Cheers to Medford Lakes


Neeta Division Winners

1st Place:  Up N’ Comers - Summertime

2nd Place:  Canoe Kids on the Block - Moon Landing

Honorable Mention:  Sink or Swim - Día de los Muertos


Nokomis Division Winners

1st Place:  Medford United Methodist Church - Welcome to Medrock Lakes

2nd Place:  Nut-N-Butt Paddles - Nordic Triumph


Single Canoe Division Winners

1st Place:  Lil’ Paddlers - Harry Paddler

2nd Place:  Hardwick Family - Small Town

3rd Place:  Mildly Disturbed - Victory Lap, three weeks in the Lakes

Honorable Mention:  The Leftovers - Beauty & the Beast


Organization Division Winners

1st Place:  ML Lions Club - Time to Join the Lions

2nd Place:  ML Women's Club - Explorer Happiness is where you are


Junior Division Winners

1st Prize:  ML Camp - 9 Years to a Bronze Shield

 2nd Prize:  Pine Cones - Shiver Me Timbers


Mary Conrad Golden Oar Award:  Gary Miller

Captain’s Award for Technological Achievement:  On the Rocks (OTR)


Mardi Gras’ Winners

1st Prize – Tie:  Tursi Family & Franken Family

3rd Prize - Kornafel Family 

 Canoe Carnival Hall of Fame Winners 2019:

Joan & Joe Doyle

The Baker’s Dozen