BY NANCY GAGNET | MIRROR REPORTER — The city of Maumee will move forward with plans to hold the traditional Independence Day fireworks this year.
Maumee will host the event in conjunction with Perrysburg on Saturday, July 3.
Last year’s fireworks were canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic; however, with restrictions easing, the decision was made to move forward with planning this year’s celebration. City administrator Patrick Burtch made the announcement at the monthly Maumee Uptown Business Association meeting on April 6.
“I feel much more comfortable – I think council does, too – holding something like this in July. I think by then, it’s going to be pretty safe,” Burtch said.
The city of Maumee will join with Perrysburg to split the cost of the fireworks display. A deposit of $15,000 that was submitted last year will be added to this year’s $30,000 display cost, making it even larger than in previous years. In keeping with tradition, the fireworks will be blasted from the Fort Meigs Memorial Bridge at dark.
Traditionally, the event draws thousands to the area. Maumee Mayor Rich Carr understands that the ongoing pandemic will pose the need for certain restrictions, but he also believes that it is time to move forward with public events.
“We are at a point that I think we need to get back to doing things we enjoy for our own psychological well-being,” he said. “I hope people will be responsible and respect recommendations for social distancing and masks. I think the residents in Maumee will be responsible. I don’t think I am being naive.”
Extra volunteers could be needed to ensure health and safety guidelines are being followed. Carr also acknowledged that he would be criticized for moving forward with the event.
“I will probably be criticized,” Carr said. “It doesn’t matter what it is, people are so divided that it is pretty much the way it is with everything today in our society.”
At this time, the Maumee Uptown Business Association plans to organize food trucks and live music for the event, although the typical children’s activities, such as a bouncy house and face painting, will not take place. Further details are still being discussed.
Burtch also announced that the annual Memorial Day parade has been canceled this year in uptown Maumee.