ROCKAWAY BEACH — Despite some reports, Rockaway Beach officials say the city’s annual Fourth of July fireworks celebration will go on this year.
Alderman Terry Segrist said this week, following a special meeting held May 31, that his efforts to spearhead the fireworks show were going well.
“We’re really close to having the dollars we need,” Segrist said. “We’ve secured insurance and hopefully we can go on. We have faith in the other people who have pledged funds to come forward.”
Alderwoman Judy Daniels said one media outlet reported, prior to Monday’s meeting, that the city had called off its Fourth of July festivities.
Segrist said that is not the case, however.
“We’ve promoted it and talked about it,” he said. “All the news we get is negative and we want to build the city up.”
Another meeting is set for June 14 to begin planning the fireworks show.
Segrist said donations to cover the costs of the fireworks show have varied widely, from $10 and $50 donations up to $1,000.
“We’re going to consider this Fourth of July an independence from the negativity,” he added. “We’ve got resorts, restaurants and things to do. Rockaway Beach is a great place.”
Stew Jones, adjutant for the Rockaway Beach AmVets post, said the group is ready to help.
Jones said he’s in the process of securing meat to barbecue and entertainment acts for the holiday.
“We want one big Rockaway event,” he said.
Alderman Jerry Simms thanked Segrist for his hard work.
“We wanted to try to fund this with donations, without using taxpayer dollars,” he said. “Through Terry’s commitment, this project has been saved. Terry deserves a big hand for organizing this.”
It was at the end of May when Segrist said he found out that Rockaway Beach Chamber of Commerce was planning to cancel the annual celebration due to funding. Since that time, he has been working on gathering donations and support to save the 2013 Fourth of July event.