Nestled in the foothills of the Georgia Blue Ridge Mountains lies Lake Sidney Lanier, one of America's favorite lakes. Over 7.5 million people a year choose to visit Lanier. Seventy-six recreational areas have been developed around the lake under the direction of the Corps of Engineers. These include 46 parks operated directly by the Corps, 10 marinas, and Lake Lanier Islands. The remaining areas are leased to county and city governments or other organizations such as the Boy Scouts. With over 692 miles of shoreline, the lake is well known for its aqua-blue colored water, spectacular scenery and variety of recreational activities. Constructed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in the 1950s, Lake Lanier is a multi-purpose lake that provides for flood protection, power production, water supply, navigation, recreation and fish and wildlife management. Lake Lanier is one of 464 lakes in 43 states constructed and operated by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers. It has won the best operated lake of the year award in 1990, 1997 and 2002.