July 4 fireworks show on track for this year, says organizer
June 05, 2013The July 4 Valley Center fireworks show is going forward again this year, organizer Kelly Crews told The Roadrunner this week. It has enough money to proceed, although Fireworks for Valley Center is still seeking smaller donations, "because every penny counts," and to add more amenities.
Over the past year Crews has been working on collecting money from major donors and now has $34,000 including $20,000 from Valley View Hotel and Casino as presenting sponsor, $2,000 from Arie DeJong, $2,500 from Darlene Shiley, and $2,500 from SDG&E. In addition, the Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians donated $7,000 for logistical support. Having enough money now makes it easier to begin collecting donations for next year.
"We also need smaller donations to make this a community event and to add amenities to the show," said Mrs. Crews.
Viewing of the fireworks will be from the Valley Center ballfields on Parks & Rec District property, although the fireworks will be shot from the adjoining property of John Belanich.
Viewers should bring their own chairs and picnic dinner. Blankets are also a good idea, as sometimes it can get chilly. The VC Kiwanis Club will serve food and Charlie Smith of Country Kettle Corn will sell his sweet and salty snack. A church group may offer face painting and inflatable jumpers will also be available to play on for a $1 suggested donation.
Parking will be across the street at VC Municipal Water District property. The $4 fee collected will benefit the California Highway Patrol Explorers.
Mrs. Crew added, "This year the CHP will be onsite to direct traffic. They will turn off the signal lights to get people in and out as fast as possible. This year getting out of the event will be easier than ever before!"
Getting permits continues to be an ever-increasing difficulty, she said, "because we are using the Community Center we have to go above and beyond. We did a CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act) report for Belanich's property even though it's not required."
So far, she is dealing with a single complaint of a resident who called the County. This resident is worried about her horses' safety during the show. "We recommend that each family near the site take the precautions and consult a veterinarian on what they need to do," said Mrs. Crews.
The organizers recommend that horse owners put bright lights on in the stable to mask the fireworks, and to play music and continue to turn up the volume all the way through the show from 8 p.m. until the end of the show at 9:30 p.m.
Because complaints caused the show to be cancelled one year, and created logistical problems on another year, Crews and her people have started to promote the show a year in advance to hamstring last-minute attempts at cancelling it. The idea is that the community has known about the event for a year in advance, so a last minute complaint can be shown to be unjustified.
The Decades, whose name says what they do, will provide live entertainment: provide music that spans the generations. Some band members live locally and they are donating some of their time.
Gates open at 6 p.m. on July 4. The Kiwanis will begin serving food then and the band will start playing at the same time. Fireworks begin at 9 p.m. exactly, culminating at 9:20 p.m. People are encouraged to bring flashlights to help them get back to their cars as the ballfield lights take 15 minutes to come on.
"If anyone wants to organize kids games like egg toss or three legged race we welcome their participation but adults must be in charge," said Mrs. Crews.
Some who are helping out with the event include VC Fire Dept. and Fire Marshal George Lucia Capt. Christina Wallace of Cal Fire, Charlie Smith, Mimi Van Koughnett, the Usher family, the Kiwanis Club, Lori Lallo, Newell Cummings and the Mike Payson of the CHP. Also Valley Center Insurance, Kelly Martwex, Mike Argus with the Sheriff's Dept, Gina Roberts, Alan Kirkpatrick, Willie Redfern, Doug Johnson, Don Martin, Tishmal Turner, David Morenberg, EDCO, Dan Meyer and John Belanich.
Fireworks for Valley Center is a 501 (C) (3) charitable corporation. If you want to donate, send checks to 108 Chesapeake Court, San Marcos CA 92069. Or call 760-670-7062.