Archive for Thursday, July 5, 2007

Storms can’t dampen festive 4th

Funnel cloud seen near K-10

Tiffany Tatom, left, photographs Fourth of July fireworks from Burcham Park in North Lawrence. Rain and high winds moved through Lawrence mid-afternoon Wednesday but cleared ahead of the city's annual Independence Day celebration, which included fireworks, music and more.

Tiffany Tatom, left, photographs Fourth of July fireworks from Burcham Park in North Lawrence. Rain and high winds moved through Lawrence mid-afternoon Wednesday but cleared ahead of the city's annual Independence Day celebration, which included fireworks, music and more.

July 5, 2007


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Summer showers can't dampen the holiday plans in Lawrence

This year, the Lawrence Jaycees spent $12,000 to put on Lawrence's only fireworks display. With severe thunderstorm watches in place this afternoon, there was some question whether or not the show would go on... Enlarge video

Severe storms roll through Lawrence

At around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, a fierce thunderstorm rolled through Lawrence, bringing with it wind gusts of over 60 mph and disrupted holiday festivities for those out at Clinton Lake and across town. Enlarge video

After rain and high winds, Lawrencians saw the light on Wednesday.

About $12,000 in fireworks exploded over the Kansas River around 10 p.m. as scheduled - a return to Fourth of July festivities following a rush of inclement weather in the early afternoon.

"If we called off the fireworks, we have no rain day," said Rick Bellinger, show organizer and Lawrence Jaycees member. "We'd be sending the fireworks back, and there would have been no fireworks this year, so it would have been really bad."

Gusts of 60 miles per hour were recorded at Lawrence Memorial Hospital around 3:30 p.m., and the National Weather Service issued a severe thunderstorm warning for the Lawrence area.

Tornado sirens also blared around 3:30 p.m. for Lecompton, Lawrence and west Douglas County after law enforcement spotted a funnel cloud near Kansas Highway 10 and Wakarusa Drive.

The weather chased boaters off Clinton Lake and knocked out power to more than 350 Lawrence customers, affecting 228 customers in the area between 19th and 20th streets and Harper to Massachusetts streets, as well as an additional 90 customers by U.S. Highway 40 and Second Street, Westar Energy reported. By day's end, power was restored to all local customers, according to Westar's Web site.

For many Independence Day revelers, the weather was a temporary setback, and concerts and other festivities continued on schedule after the storm.

Susan Shea, of Lawrence, and her family gathered at Burcham Park for the fireworks display.

"We were going to come out no matter what," she said.


Bobbi Walls 10 years, 8 months ago

There's always someone who has to complain. We sat right by the barricades on the levee, and it was great. My girls loved it.

My_Voice 10 years, 8 months ago

I have to say that the Lawrence fireworks is the saddest thing I have ever seen.... Why on earth did it have to last so long? If they would have just made the show 20 minutes or so it would have been awesome. But the long waits inbetween shots and the plain effects, Lawrence can do much better than this....

byrdstadler 10 years, 8 months ago

I would not say the fireworks were sad, but they were definately too long. If they could take what they did last night and smash it into only a 20-25 minute display, it would have been much better.
Is the time between each of the fireworks due to people lighting them by hand? I understand if doing it any other way would cost more money than is available, but I would then say just shorten the show and try to make the finally bigger.

filmguru 10 years, 8 months ago

Regarding the funnel cloud spotted at K-10 and Wakarusa, why didn't we hear the sirens? We live in Pinnacle Woods just west of Wakarusa on Clinton Parkway. My wife and I were in our apartment, by a window. We heard the wind, but not any sirens. Are they defective? Are they placed poorly? I'd like to know if they are working before the next such incident.

b_asinbeer 10 years, 8 months ago

It says that alarms went off in Lawrence...I didn't hear anything. Am I missing something here?

By the way, I went to two fireworks shows last year. The one at Perry Lake, and the one here. Perry Lake has us beat by miles. Lawrence takes too should be a 15 minute show if they go at "regular fireworks show speed".

Confrontation 10 years, 8 months ago

Why don't people stop complaining about a FREE fireworks show?

Christine Pennewell Davis 10 years, 8 months ago

perrys ar real good they put on a show, just by accident saw eudoras last night it was nice also.

overthemoon 10 years, 8 months ago

The fireworks show is lame...its still fun but it seems like its just a bunch of guys shooting off firecrackers with no rhyme or reason to it. I know that its free and we all out to be darned thankful, which we are, but for a supposedly sophisticated art-hip town to be putting on a production that would have been mildly exciting 40 years seems kind of odd.

However, to who ever it was shooting off big stuff somewhere in or near Old West Lawrence north of the stadium...Hey folks, don't know how you pulled off firing so many without getting arrested, but it was a great show. Thanks for sharing!!

leadrain 10 years, 8 months ago

Nice shot of the Maple. They sat up right next to my girl and I. Why do you think we weren't sitting there? Too bad they didn't get a sot of the bats flying around the banks, or even better, a pic of the explosion that occured just feet from launch crew. I saw that and was like " Damn, where's my camera?" THAT would have been front page worthy. I do hope noone was hurt. All in all, we loved it.

Kat Christian 10 years, 8 months ago

We went to Burham Park to watch the fireworks. They were okay, could have been better, last year's were a little better. During the middle they got a little mundane and there were short delays plus the grand finale wasn't that big of a deal. Looks as if they set off the best ones first they it sort of petered out from there. Plus they were shot a little low - I thought at one time someone was going to get burned when some debree floated down into the crowed. They didn't play any patriotic music, the Star Spangled Banner - that was very disappointing. Still we had a fun time. It would have been nice if they could have lowered the spot light on the crowd during the firework's display - that was blinding. It was good seeing town's people gathering together. Driving home wasn't bad - I didn't run into any traffic. There were a lot of loud parties though. If Lawrence wants to ban fireworks in city limits they really need to do better with their fireworks display and ban the selling of fireworks in this county altogether. Wish they's make up their minds when they decide to enforce a law - so wishy-washy. How do you expect it to be abide when there are so many grey areas?

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