First Annual Buckeye Lake Pirate Festival in May

Come for the Treasure ~ Stay for the Fun!

The new Buckeye Lake Pirate Festival will officially open in the Village of Buckeye Lake at 5:00 pm on Friday, May 17, 2024 with a ribbon cutting and a sneak peak of the Pirate Marketplace. On Saturday, May 18, 2024, from 11:00 – 5:00 pm, Buckeye Lake will welcome Pirates, Mermaids, Steampunk fans and the public for a regional Treasure Hunt by Land and Sea with family-friendly Pirate Marketplace.

Pirate Marketplace

The Pirate Marketplace will be open on Saturday, May 18, 2024 from 11:00 am – 5:00 pm and will be held at “Port Royal,” located at the Harbor Community Center at 5312 Walnut Road, Buckeye Lake, Ohio.

The Pirate Marketplace will feature over 60 vendors and free family & children’s’ entertainment throughout the day. The Northern Exposure Landship (Ripley’s) “World’s Tallest ArrVee” will be ‘docked’ in front of the Pirate Marketplace. A portion of the Marketplace Tradeshow proceeds will benefit the Harbor Community Center.

Treasure Hunt by Land & Sea

On Saturday, May 18, 2024 there will be a Pirate Treasure Hunt by Land & Sea. Special Treasure Hunt Maps will be available at Port Royal and at 40 participating businesses while supplies last. The Maps list area locations where adults may enter a drawing to win a Treasure Chest with contents valued at $150+. No purchase is necessary. There are 40 Treasure Chests (one for each participating business) that will be given away on the following day.

Special Event Tours

As part of the fun on Saturday, May 18, 2024 there will be 13 Special Event Tours offered by select businesses in the area. Festival-goers can participate in mini-hunts with special interest groups. These Treasure Hunt Tours include a Steampunk Whistle Stop Tour, Shop and Dine with a Mermaid.

Watercraft Tours will be offered for kayaks and stand-up paddleboards, pontoon boats, Sea-Doo Switch & Sea-Doo personal watercraft; Wheeled Vehicle Tours will be offered for golf cars, motorcycles, side-by-sides (ATVs), Jeeps, and trucks.


Advance registration is free and optional.
The first 300 people who register will receive a free bandana that may be picked up the day Pirate Festival. Registrants will be notified the week of the Festival if they are one of the first 300 to receive a bandana. Limit one bandana per registration via email provided; Registrants must be 18 years or older.


Community Support

Community support for the family-friendly Buckeye Lake Pirate Festival has been overwhelmingly positive. Tim Rader of Mid Ohio Golf Cars says, “We are very pleased and excited to welcome the Buckeye Lake Pirate Fest in our community. This will be a fun day in the area and is expected to attract guests to the region which will be great for local businesses as a boost to sales revenue just prior to Memorial Day.”

Cindy Disbennett, owner of the Mill Dam Corner Grille says, “We are so excited to be part of this exciting event in the Buckeye Lake region! Pirate Fest is similar to Winterfest but warmer! Like many area businesses: we’ll have our award-winning staff, & Distorted Silence Band, dressed as Pirates, Steampunks & Mermaids to get all into the spirit! The Mill Dam Corner Grille is featuring Breakfast with Pirates, also Scurvy Dogs, Peg Leg (wings) Fish & Chips & Rum Runners! We are also hosting the Jeep Tour kickoff at 11:00 am with live music on the huge covered patio at 3:00!”

About The Buckeye Lake Pirate Festival
The Buckeye Lake Pirate Festival is produced by Buckeye Events, owned by partners Kelly and Neena Collins of Hebron. The Collins met with several area business owners in 2023 to discuss ways of generating early season revenue by promoting a free event for locals and visitors to the Buckeye Lake area.

The concept was inspired by the annual Buckeye Lake Winterfest, held in late January, that draws thousands of people to local establishments to celebrate winter and early spring with festive adult-oriented activities. Given that the weather should be warmer in May plans were made to create an event that was family-friendly in the region with lots of adult-oriented fun as well.

Major Pirate Fest Sponsors include: The Island House, Mill Dam Corner Grille, Papa Boo’s, Kool 101.7 FM WNKO, Edward Jones Financial Advisor Lynn Tramontano and Buckeye Lake Boater Training.

Visit the website for more information.

About Buckeye Events
The Buckeye Lake Pirate Fest is produced by Buckeye Events which is a family partnership owned by Kelly & Neena Collins. Buckeye Events was started as an events management company to create, develop, plan, and oversee the Buckeye Lake Pirate Festival and other events. It is primarily sponsored by Buckeye Lake Boater Training.

The Collins’ are Hebron residents. They started the Buckeye Lake Boater Training business 3 years ago servicing the Buckeye Lake area. This business provides boating safety and education services focusing on providing individual hands-on training on an owner/operators’ boat.

Kelly and Neena Collins are serial entrepreneurs and have decades of experience producing large scale seasonal events and entertainment. They are formerly from Columbus, Ohio, and previously created and co-owned the Midwest Haunters Convention, and owned the Scareatorium Haunted Attraction, and Funhouse Faces, a makeup artist agency, among other business ventures.

For additional information please call Kelly Collins, (614) 203-4626 or send Kelly email.

Filed under: Announcements, Community, Community, Events, Life, News, Outdoors
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By The Lancaster Herald

The Lancaster Herald is a news and media website sharing community-contributed content about people, places and experiences in Lancaster and Southeast Ohio.