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About the MLA

Welcome to our website!


Join Us!

We have created a busy workload for ourselves, but we feel that this is a very worthwhile undertaking.  We are confident that you will see great benefit in what we have set out to do.  We invite you to become a member and get involved with your Association.  Help us keep our community a great place to live, work, and play in Eastern Ontario. 

Our name

You might have noticed that there is only one Mississippi Lake on the map, although we call ourselves the Mississippi LAKES Association. For as long as anyone can remember, the locals have spoken of four different sections of the lake as separate "lakes". They each have unique topography, charm, and character.

First Lake starts at the Highway 7 bridge at Carleton Place and ends at the first narrowing off Lake Park.

Second Lake is the wide section of the lake from Lake Park to the narrows starting off Kings Bay.

The Narrows continue from there until the lake widens again off Black Bass Bay.


The Big Lake is the deepest and largest part of the lake, ending at the Highway 7 bridge at Innisville.


And so the mystery is solved.  We find it convenient to speak of these four "lakes", and trust that you too will come to know and enjoy them by their informal names. Have fun out there - whichever lake you happen to be on!


Our Mission

To promote the maintenance, protection and improvement of Mississippi Lake in order to achieve a proper balance between the legitimate interests of users of the Lake and the maintenance of the ecosystem and environment.

To foster and support environmental activities which protect and enhance the quality of the Mississippi Lake and adjacent lands.

To promote and encourage the awareness of and adherence to marine and other relevant laws,

To make users of the Lake aware of navigational hazards.

To liaise with and to represent the Association members’ interests with other organizations and agencies.


Our History

The Mississippi Lakes Association was established on 6 October 1944 by a small group of dedicated individuals who saw great benefit in forming an organization to provide two vital services to the lake community: (a) aquatic vegetation (weed) control; and (b) marker buoys for safe navigation. The buoy program is a core MLA activity to this day!


In 2002, after decades of providing useful services, but nevertheless limited in its ability to advocate for the lake community, the MLA decided to incorporate under the federal Canada Corporations Act. When the new federal Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act (NFP Act) came into force on 17 October, 2011, all Corporations were required to apply for continuance under the new Act. MLA applied and was granted permission to transition to this new Act, effective 24 June 2014.


On 6 October 2014, the MLA celebrated its 70th anniversary. We continue our work to ensure an equitable balance between a healthy environment for all living creatures, and a vibrant and enjoyable playground and workplace for the surrounding communities. We hope to continue providing this great service to the region for many more decades to come.


Please read Frank Mills' excellent article for a detailed account of the History of the MLA covering the period from its beginnings in the early 1940's until Autumn 2014.


2015 was a milestone year in the MLA's history. At the Annual General Meeting in May 2015, the Lake Plan was approved by Special Resolution of the members, and set the Association upon a journey of increasing commitment, engagement, and relevance to the lake community. The 66 Actions of the Lake Plan will be progressed over the coming years. As a result of the various parallel activities and complexity introduced by the Lake Plan, it became evident that the Executive Committee required assistance. Three new Committees were established to focus the efforts of the Association and to free the Executive Committee to provide the necessary oversight and strategic direction.


2016 was a busy year. The Lake Plan was progressed on many fronts, and the Association undertook the Love Your Lake program over the summer, in concert with Watersheds Canada. We feel this was a major accomplishment in providing valuable information on the status of our lakefront, and in assisting property owners to improve the health and viability of their waterfronts.


2017 was an equally busy year. As a follow-on to the very successful Love Your Lake program, the Association promoted the Healthy Shorelines initiative, again in cooperation with Watersheds Canada. Also, after three years of operating with the 2014 By-law, several changes were proposed, and approved at the AGM, to make the regulations clearer and to better serve the needs of the Association.


2018 was the year that the Board of Directors concentrated its efforts on a very important aspect of the Association: the members ! A series of Town Hall meetings were planned to address the concerns of our membership on a variety of topics. Our first Town Hall was actually held on 30 Nov 2017 on the topic of Fishing Tournaments. In the Spring of 2018 we held a meeting to bring all Road Associations' representatives together, to determine how the MLA can best serve the interests of our community. The result was the establishment of a fourth Committee, the Roads Committee, which will research and gather information on a wide variety of issues important to residents of private roads. Please look out for these developments on our website and in the e-newsletter: Your Mississippi Minute.