Okatibbee Lake celebrates 50 years- VIDEO


An act of congress authorized a multi-purpose project hoping to reduce flooding in Collinsville. 50 years later, folks are celebrating the 11,000 acre project is known as Okatibbee Lake and Dam. State Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith attended and said she is extremely proud of five decades of success.

“Well you know we work so hard in the US Senate and we go to all the committee meetings and introduce bills on different projects, but to be able to come out and see something that has been successful for 50 years. It started around a conference table somewhere. It’s just so encouraging to see a competition and a celebration,” said Senator Hyde-Smith.

Senator Hyde- Smith said Mississippi has extreme issues with flooding throughout the state, but the Okatibbee is a great example for how to control it.

“To know this is management, this is resources that can control flooding when you have these tributaries and these creeks and streams that have to have management to be able to enjoy it in the proper way and not be in a constant crisis because it was not managed properly,” said Senator Hyde-Smith.

She said the Mobile District of the Army Corp. of engineers, who maintain the lake, are a big reason why the Okatibbee is successful. Commander of the Mobile District Col. Sebastien Joly said he is thrilled with the community’s support.

“We love to see when the public comes out and enjoys our lakes, because they’re really the best advocates for making sure small projects like this in some of the more remote areas of the country are remembered and really identified for being very important to the local community,” said Col. Joly.

The lake also allows for recreational fun, like boating, fishing, camping and hunting.

The Okatibbee lake includes three designated swimming areas and four boat ramps for folks to enjoy.