Fab Fourth fireworks at risk

Published 6:16 pm Thursday, March 31, 2011

$10k needed by April 15
Time is running out to raise the funds needed to bring a fireworks display to the Fabulous Fourth celebration in Columbus this year.
The Columbus Fourth of July committee needs $10,000 by April 15 to secure the fireworks display. As of early this week only about $1,000 had been raised.
According to committee member Skipper Scoggins, if the community does not donate enough funds, the fireworks will have to be canceled.
Ernie Kan, a Columbus town council member who is also on the festival committee, said the Fabulous Fourth celebration will be held even without fireworks, but it will be much smaller and will not draw as many tourists from outside the county.
“That is what many people are forgetting,” Kan said. “We receive taxes from the people who come in that day, and vendors also make money to spend in our area later.”
Columbus is one of only a few small towns locally to offer fireworks on the Fourth of July, so many families from all around the area come to the Fabulous Fourth, and Kan says they spend money while they’re here.
No tax dollars are budgeted for the event this year, so the budget is $15,000, compared to last year’s $32,000.
The town plans to hold the festival using money and volunteers from the community. The committee is seeking churches and non-profit organizations in the area to offer carnival games at booths rented from the town. Anyone interested in renting a booth should contact 828-899-5111 or ernie@columbusnc.com.
Besides the possible fireworks display, plans for the Fab Fourth celebration this year include rides, games, live music, food and other activities.
The celebration will include a display of local art. During June, local artwork will be displayed in the Columbus Town Hall. Children’s art will be displayed in one of the businesses in town or in a notebook in the town hall. Anyone in Polk County can submit art for this diaplay for a small fee. Only artwork that is framed will be hung on the walls.
The celebration will end at 9:45-10 p.m. if there is a fireworks display and at 7 p.m. if enough money is not raised to have the fireworks.
Scoggins and Kan said the committee will continue to seek donations and sponsorships from community residents and businesses.
“If 100 companies each gave $100, it would be enough to fund the festival,” Kan said.
Donations can be sent to Columbus Fourth of July, P.O. Box 146, Columbus, N.C. 28722.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox