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Archive for Monday, June 25, 2007

Drop in city funding won’t affect show

June 25, 2007

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Lawrence Jaycees will again put on a public Fourth of July fireworks display on the Kansas River levee across from Burcham Park.

The show will go on despite a decrease in funding from the city of Lawrence. Last year the city contributed $5,000 to help pay for the display. This year's city contribution is $2,000.

"They (the city) are having budget concerns and had to cut back, which is fine," said Gary Saathoff, one of the Jaycees event organizers. "They support us in many other ways."

Emprise Bank of Lawrence is contributing $7,000 to the Jaycees for fireworks costs, the same amount it gave last year.

The decrease in city funding won't affect the show, Saathoff said.

"It will be the same as last year," he said. "Burcham Park, where most of the onlookers go to watch, will be open at 6 p.m., and live music will play at 6:30 p.m."

The Alferd Packer Memorial String Band will be the main musical act at the park, Second and Indiana streets. The fireworks will begin at 9:45 p.m.

The Jaycees are faced with a new problem this year. In the past, Lawrence Bus Co. has provided a shuttle service for people wanting to get to the park for the show. The bus company, however, is going out of business at the end of this month.

"That's a situation we haven't got under control yet," Saathoff said. "We're trying to figure something out."

Elsewhere in the area, Perry Lake Association is organizing a display for the second year in a row. Fireworks will go off at 9:40 p.m. July 3 at the lake northwest of Lawrence.

Last year, the fireworks were shot from the dam for the first time since the show was discontinued in 2003. About 20,000 people on land and in boats watched last year's show, said Shannon Showalter, president of the Perry Lake Association, which organizes the event.

A fireworks display is planned July 4 in McLouth at Stan Braksick Sports Complex. It will start at 9:50 p.m.

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