By Tiffany Y. Latta,
10:02 PM Tuesday, June 19, 2012
SPRINGFIELD — Area leaders are trying to raise $1,200 for the 18th annual Old Fashioned Fireworks display.
Raising funds for the event has been difficult in recent years because of the economic downturn. Still, with two weeks before the July 3 event at Clark County Fairgrounds, officials say they have collected $23,000 to $24,000 in donations and pledges.
“It’s always a challenge when you’re asking for money. But we have a network of donors that we use every year, and we always have a few new ones,” Commissioner John Detrick said.
Detrick and Springfield City Commissioner Kevin O’Neill are trying to raise $25,000 for the event put on by the National Trail Parks and Recreation District.
The funds pay for the pyrotechnic display, fairgrounds security and other things needed for the event.
The free event attracts up to 30,000 each year and is provided by Rozzi’s Famous Fireworks of Loveland, which hosts fireworks shows for about 64 communities, including Beavercreek, Troy and Huber Heights.
Kevin O’Neill said the annual tradition was nearly shelved several years ago after NTPRD began struggling financially.
“There was no money and NTPRD couldn’t justify paying for a fireworks display when they couldn’t paint the swings and slides,” O’Neill said.
O’Neill said area leaders made sure the event continued because it serves as a quality of life issue that many residents look forward to.
“I don’t think we can afford not to do it. We have to have some semblance of normalcy even in bad times,” O’Neill said.
Tom Fagan, of Rozzi’s, said the 20-minute show will feature new displays that will excite spectators.
“We always have new stuff. It’s never they same old show,” Fagan said.
“It’s a beautiful show. The crew that does it says that of all the shows, this one is unique because it has three different firing sites.”
For information on how to donate funds for the fireworks display, call NTPRD at 937-328-7275. Donations can also be sent to NTPRD at 1301 Mitchell Blvd., Springfield, OH 45503. Checks should specifiy that donations are for the fireworks.