Fireworks postponed

Due to predicted weather conditions, the Portsmouth Civic Forum has decided to postpone the annual fireworks display until Saturday, July 9.

“I know a lot of people are going to be upset, but I can’t control the weather,” said Civic Forum spokesman, Gene Arms. “We’re supposed to have an 80 percent chance of rain on Monday, and a 70 percent chance on Tuesday. We have over 20 cases of fireworks that we don’t want drawing moisture. If they get wet, they can malfunction and that isn’t safe for anyone.”

Even if the fireworks could be launched in the rain, the vendors and entertainment would not be able to set up because the electrical equipment used could be ruined. There is a lot of behind-the-scenes work that takes place prior to planning an event like this.

“For one thing, we have to prepare the site in Kentucky to shoot the show, if we set up the mortars to shoot them, they’ll have to set out, and we’ve had them stolen before,” explained Arms. “We also have over 20 cases of fireworks that have to be handled, and they are transported from a bunker in Lancaster. You have to take into consideration that even if we could have moved them forward, there would be no restrooms, or concessions to accommodate people. We also have to have a permit that has to be redone by the Fire Chief in Kentucky. We have state and federal guidelines that we have to abide by, we have to notify to the Coast Guard to help regulate the river traffic to keep people safe. It’s a lot of work, and a lot of things have to fall into place to get this event running.”

The July 9 program will continue as regularly scheduled.

Doc Roc and the Remedies will play from 7 until 9:45.

“We will launch the fireworks promptly at 10 p.m.” said Arms. “We hope everyone will still come and celebrate.”

By Ciara Conley

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Reach Ciara Conley at 740-353-3101 ext. 1932, Facebook “Ciara Conley – Daily Times” and Twitter @PDT_Ciara

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