Situated near Vinita in northeast Oklahoma, the Pensacola Dam is the first hydroelectric facility ever constructed in the state of Oklahoma. The Pensacola Dam is currently operated by the Grand River Dam Authority and currently serves as a reliable source of abundant energy used to power up the entire state. Built between 1938 and 1940, the Pensacola Dam was constructed through the help of the numerous laborers that were in dire need of employment during the Great Depression. In order to further increase the reliability and power output provided by the Pensacola Dam to the entire state of Oklahoma, renovations and upgrades began to be underway in the year 1997.
The Pensacola Dam has also become a favorite destination by locals and tourists who are looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city life and be able to enjoy a fun-filled weekend surrounded by nature. The Grand Lake area behind the Pensacola Dam features a wide range of museums and attractions you and your family are sure to enjoy. While visiting the Pensacola Dam, make sure to book a reservation on the Cherokee Queen, a paddleboat that offers scenic tours along the river behind the Pensacola Dam. The Cherokee Queen is a favorite dining place where you and that special someone can enjoy a romantic evening cruising down the river while sampling some of the finest cuisine in the area. Educational and historic tours are also held daily, especially during the summer months. Lasting for about an hour, these tours begin at the GRDA Patrol Office on the western part of the dam and provide you and your family spectacular views as you learn more about the history and the story behind the Pensacola Dam.