July 1, 2014
Township’s fireworks festivities aim to be bigger, better
By Nick Mordowanec
C & G Staff Writer
CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Fireworks will light up the sky and various activities will rule the ground on July 9 at the Clinton Township Civic Center.
The annual installment of the township’s Fourth of July festivities seeks to be bigger and better this year, providing a wide range of entertainment for everyone.
This year’s event will include a concert by Fifty AMP Fuse, and the township’s Historic Commission will also open the Historical Village’s Moravian Hall and Log Cabin to tours and demonstrations.
The schedule for the day’s events are as follows: at 6 p.m., children’s activities will begin, as will the tours and demonstrations at the Historical Village; Fifty AMP Fuse will play from 8:15 p.m.-10 p.m.; and the fireworks are expected to start around 10 p.m. or once dusk hits.
Children will be offered arguably the biggest amount of rides and activities in the event’s history. The township added two more carnival rides to the lot, adding up to seven free rides for the kids — with some rides having weight limits that max out at 200 and 250 pounds. There will also be a moonwalk, slides, obstacle courses, Roscoe the Clown, Captain Jack Sparrow, a photo booth and a rock wall.
Trustee Dean Reynolds, who organizes the event alongside administrative aide Debbie Staller and coordinator Jessica Holden, said the event is bigger and better this year.
“When the economy went down, a lot of communities wanted to offer free things to the residents, but there isn’t a community around that doesn’t charge for something now,” Reynolds said. “Through generous donations from businesses, I’ve been able to keep everything free. The only thing they charge for is food, drinks or glow sticks. It’s a nice family event.”
Reynolds added that the goal is to raise $25,000 in private donations in order to continually provide all the amenities of the event. He said it’s important to do free things for the residents because it makes it a better community.
Among the big sponsors of the event are First State Bank, which donated $6,000 towards a lengthier fireworks display, free amusement rides and numerous face painters.
Also, Big Boy Restaurant on Hall Road will be on hand to provide burgers, chicken tenders, fries, onion rings, milkshakes, soda and water. A variety of carnival-style food such as elephant ears, corn dogs, popcorn and cotton candy will be offered by 2X2 Concessions. Kona Ice will serve shaved ice, and Let’s Pop will serve kettle corn and lemonade.
Reynolds said an estimated 10,000 people showed up to the same event last summer. This will be the seventh year of the fireworks, and it continues to get bigger, somewhat due to help from residents in the community.
“It has grown tremendously over the years,” Staller said. “What’s happening is the social media aspect of this on Facebook and Twitter, and people let others know.
“We have people that start laying their blankets out at 8 in the morning and staking their territory for the event. What I observed is that people love fireworks, but it’s a free event for the community. It’s just a real great event that brings the community together and families together.”
And for the fireworks aficionados, the colorful display is expected to last 15 minutes — which is a few minutes longer than the displays that took place during the recent recession era.
Parking will be available at the Civic Center, as well at the adjacent Clinton-Macomb Public Library after 8 p.m. St. Paul of Tarsus Church will also provide parking. A shuttle bus will also bring visitors to the event from Erie Elementary School, the Chippewa Valley Ninth Grade Center parking lot and the township’s soccer fields just south of the Civic Center building and Budd Park.
Parking at Budd Park will be available, weather permitting. Beginning at 6 p.m., the shuttle bus will pick up passengers from all non-Civic Center parking areas. Handicapped parking will be available adjacent to the concession stand.
Visitors are invited to bring blankets and lawn chairs on the Civic Center hill. However, glass containers, personal fireworks and alcohol are not permitted.
The Civic Center is located at 40700 Romeo Plank Road.