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Lawrence and Douglas County

Lawrence and Douglas county

July 4 bursting with opportunities for viewing pyrotechnic displays

July 1, 2013

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Thursday was the first day that fireworks could be sold in Perry, and the Hamm family checked out the selection at  Big Bangs Fireworks on U.S. Highway 24. From left are Kayla, 9, Emily, 11, Jessica, 8,  mom Heather holding Austin, 3, and dad Rick Hamm. In Jefferson and Franklin counties, the use of fireworks is permitted in unincorporated areas. In Douglas County, fireworks may be used on private property in unincorporated areas from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday and from 7 a.m. to midnight on July 4. The city of Lawrence bans the use and sale of fireworks in the city limits with the exception of several novelty items: party poppers, snappers, snakes and glow worms, sparklers, toy caps and toy smoke devices.

Thursday was the first day that fireworks could be sold in Perry, and the Hamm family checked out the selection at Big Bangs Fireworks on U.S. Highway 24. From left are Kayla, 9, Emily, 11, Jessica, 8, mom Heather holding Austin, 3, and dad Rick Hamm. In Jefferson and Franklin counties, the use of fireworks is permitted in unincorporated areas. In Douglas County, fireworks may be used on private property in unincorporated areas from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday and from 7 a.m. to midnight on July 4. The city of Lawrence bans the use and sale of fireworks in the city limits with the exception of several novelty items: party poppers, snappers, snakes and glow worms, sparklers, toy caps and toy smoke devices.

If your Fourth of July plans aren’t set, there’s still time to find a place for a cold beverage, the boom, sizzle and pop of fireworks and some good, old-fashioned American fun.

Communities from Lawrence to Perry to Ottawa are holding celebrations, and you’re invited. Unless otherwise noted, the events are Thursday.

Lawrence

The Party in the Park will lead up to a fireworks display sponsored by the Lawrence Jaycees.

The Lawrence Originals, a group of local, independent restaurateurs, plays host for the celebration, which starts at 4 p.m. Thursday at Watson Park, near Seventh and Tennessee streets. There will be food from Lawrence Originals restaurants, beer, live music and children’s activities.

The fireworks will start about 9:45 p.m. Watson Park and Burcham Park, 200 Indiana St., are among the places to watch the show.

Abe & Jake’s Landing, at the corner of Sixth and New Hampshire streets, will hold a fireworks viewing party beginning at 5:30 p.m. There will be food, a bounce house and kids’ games. The entry fee is $5, and proceeds from the event will benefit Ballard Community Services, a local nonprofit that provides early education programs and assistance for needy families.

Perry Lake

Fireworks are back at Perry Lake, and the show is Saturday night.

An Independence Day celebration had been routine at Perry Lake since the mid-1990s until it fizzled out in 2009. Representatives from communities throughout Jefferson County began working in January to bring it back.

The comeback event, dubbed Jeff Fest, begins at 9 a.m. Saturday. Musical acts Lost & Found, Travis Martin and the KC All Stars will perform in succession from 2 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the east end of the dam. Face painting, a car show, karaoke, and more than 40 vendors and food stands will be located in the same area.

The main event, a fireworks display choreographed to music, starts at 10 p.m. The fireworks will be shot from the top of the dam.

“That’s the unique part,” said Lonnie Morris, president of the board that reorganized the celebration. “That is what makes this the most special event in Kansas.”

There is no entry fee for Jeff Fest, but the board is asking for donations for parking, which will be on the south side of the lake off of Dam Road.

Baldwin City

To celebrate the Fourth, the city pool, at 317 Fremont St., will waive its entry fee from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. There will be a 16-foot water slide, obstacle course, dunk tank, music, games, prizes and free hot dogs. Kickball will follow at the Baldwin City Sports Complex, 100 Bullpup Drive, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. A fireworks display will begin about 9:30 p.m. and can be viewed from the Sports Complex.

De Soto

Riverfest Park, at 33440 W. 79th St., will be the site of live music, food, vendors and a fireworks display. The festivities begin at 7 p.m., and the fireworks show begins at 10 p.m.

McLouth

A fireworks display will begin when it’s dark at the Stan Braksick Sports Complex on Bulldog Boulevard. Fireworks will be shot from east of the football field, and attendees may watch from the bleachers.

Ottawa

Forest Park, at 400 N. Locust St., will host a fireworks display at dusk.

Eudora

The annual fireworks display at Eudora High School, at 2203 Church St., will begin about 9:30 p.m.

Fireworks regulations

For the nonprofessionals, make sure to know when and where fireworks are legal before preparing the launch pad.

A Lawrence ordinance bans the use and sale of fireworks in the city limits with the exception of several novelty items: party poppers, snappers, snakes and glow worms, sparklers, toy caps and toy smoke devices.

Fireworks may be used on private property in the unincorporated areas of Douglas County on July 2 and July 3 from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and on July 4 from 7 a.m. to midnight. Fireworks stands in the county start sales on Tuesday.

Sales in Jefferson and Franklin counties began June 27, and the use of fireworks in unincorporated areas is permitted in these counties.

Comments

Liberty275 1 year, 5 months ago

There is nothing left to celebrate on Independence Day when it is illegal to light the fuse yourself.

Bob_Loblaw 1 year, 5 months ago

Dumbest and saddest comment I've ever read... Measuring your "freedom" through the use of pyrotechnics. You sure haven't traveled much abroad have you? There are many places where the use of pyrotechnics is the least concern on the minds of the populace.

Liberty275 1 year, 5 months ago

I don't waste money on fireworks, but it seems the opposite of "Independence" when the government decides what time the celebration starts.

You can think that is dumb and sad. I don't.

"You sure haven't traveled much abroad"

I've been to a few countries overseas, but I'm not sure of the relevance. I didn't care what they did then and I don't care now. It's their country, not mine.

Patricia Davis 1 year, 5 months ago

My father fought in Patton's army and he thought fireworks were for sissies.

Liberty275 1 year, 5 months ago

About a mile from our tac site in Germany there was a hill that had three trees on it in a row that were twice as tall as all the others. The legend was that the third army cleared every tree from the hill 40 years earlier except three to remind the Germans who beat back their last major offensive.

hedshrinker 1 year, 5 months ago

My assessment on fireworks and some other summertime faves like motorcycle riding have been largely influenced by working in the Emergency Room...if you're old enuf (or sober enuf) to decide you don't care if you blow your fingers off, injure or kill yourself with yr freak flag flyin on yr chopper, then have at it; unfortunately much of the time these activities involve/endanger others without their permission, particularly in the case of neighbors. children, ANIMALS( who are terrified of fireworks), and other drivers or homeowners. I for one have been thrilled I can lounge on my deck on the Fourth and not be distracted by constant explosions and fear my house was going to be set alight...and can choose to leave the awe-inspiring fireworks displays to the professionals.

SkyHawk72 1 year, 5 months ago

And speaking of professionals, I saw the fireworks in Wamego Thursday night, and it put all of the displays mentioned in this article to shame. It was awesome, better than any fireworks I've ever seen west of St. Louis. I also saw the show at Royals stadium after Friday's game, and it was about 5% of the one in Wamego. If a town of 4,435 can put on a show of that size and quality, I suggest the Lawrence Jaycees pay a visit to the team in Wamego that puts their show together and start planning how to improve Lawrence's meager effort for next year. The list of sponsors for the Wamego show took the announcer about 5 minutes to read - obviously they got the entire community involved in putting on a major event, rather than having one small organization do the whole thing.

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