Fireworks display moves location

June 30, 2008

This chat has already taken place. Read the transcript below.

Gary Saathoff, of The Lawrence Jaycees, will answer your questions about the annual Fourth of July fireworks display, which has been moved from Burcham Park to Clinton Lake this year.


Thanks for joining us. I'm Jesse Fray, 6News anchor/reporter. Gary Saathoff, of the Lawrence Jaycees, is in the Newscenter this afternoon to chat with us about the move of the annual fireworks display to Clinton Lake from Burcham Park.

Gary Saathoff:

Hello. It is great to be here.


Gary, tell us why your organization decided to move the big show this year.

Gary Saathoff:

With the crowds getting bigger and bigger at burcham park, we were afraid somebody might get hurt. Safety is our number one goal.


Which part of Clinton Lake will it be held at?

Gary Saathoff:

It fireworks will be shot off of the north end of the dam on the east side.


I know there will be people mowing for the parking areas, but is anyone going to clean up the actual sesquecentennial site? It is really weedy in between the stones and looks a mess. Doesn't anyone keep it up?

Also, since it is a Lawrence "timeline", why isn't it in the actual city limits of Lawrence instead of out in the country?

Gary Saathoff:

The Lawrence Jaycees will be cleaning up before and after the fireworks. The field that will be used for parking and viewing has been baled and mowed and should be ready for the fireworks. The Sesquecntennial Point is on land leased to the city.


I'm concerned the field will be a disaster with parking and traffic. Where are the fireworks being shot off from. . . and what would be some alterantive viewing locations (besides the grass field at Sesquitennial Point).

Gary Saathoff:

As long as the rain holds off I think the field will be fine. There are plenty of places to watch from, any elevated place very few trees sould provide a good viewing.


With all the talk of tight city budgets, roads falling apart, etc. how can we afford to have an expensive fireworks display?

Gary Saathoff:

The firesworks display is paid for by donations the Jaycees receive. The major sponser this year and for the last 4 years has been Emprise Bank.


"ToddMax" wants to know how long the Jaycees have been doing this display at NO CHARGE to the city.

Gary Saathoff:

The Lawrence Jaycees have been putting on the fireworks in Lawrence for close to 50 years. I have been apart of it since 1983.


What time will the fireworks display begin?

Gary Saathoff:

The gates will open at 8pm and the fireworks will start at 10pm sharp.


Will the fireworks bother the eagles? Did you have to get special permission because of the birds?

Gary Saathoff:

We had to get permits from the city fire dept. and from the corp. of engineers.


Will there be shuttle bus service for those folks who prefer not to drive or would normally have walked downtown?

Gary Saathoff:

Unfortionately we will not be able to provide bus service this year. It is on the list for next year.


That's all the time we have for this afternoon's chat. Is there somewhere people can go for more information about Friday night's display?

Gary Saathoff:

Emprise bank has baught air time on sunflower cable channel 6, and the Journal world newspaper. Thanks for having me this year, see you at the show.


Thanks to everyone who participated in today's chat. Gary is a busy volunteer. Don't forget about our chat tomorrow afternoon with the director of the Douglas County Health Department. Have a great afternoon!


dandelion 9 years, 11 months ago

I can't see how it will be safer. You will be watching a fireworks display in the dark in a 2000 car parking lot. Now if everyone get into their cars at the same time there will be no chance of being run over, but there's always the fools who leaves 5 minutes before the end of the show to beat the traffic. I can envision some kid wandering around, looking up at the sky and getting hit by a car. I don't see how that is safer than sitting in a park next to the river. Even if no one gets hurt, can you imagine the traffic jam afterwards? I think I'm going to pass this year. Or go up on campus and watch from a faraway hill. But then there are a lot of people who love their cars and hated walking into the park, so it will probably be a big hit. I guess they'll have their cars next to them now during this celebration. Hope the cars enjoy it.

bangaranggerg 9 years, 11 months ago

wow, I feel sorry for this guy he's doing a service to the community and that chat reads like one of the stupid comment sections full of flaming from ignorant weirdos. Like this comment.

Kontum1972 9 years, 11 months ago

save gas and stay home and blow yourself up there on your property....

Melanie Birge 9 years, 11 months ago

Where will 105.9 The Lazor be pitching there Tent N E One know?

Nikki May 9 years, 11 months ago

I agree that they are doing a service, and I'm glad they are. However, so many people aren't going to make it I fear. I also do worry about the safety of this venue. There is NO lighting. I guess I don't see it as a safer thing. Of course, I'm not a member of Jaycees, so I'm not on the committee, so I have no idea what the overall plan is. Hope it's great though!

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