MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP, MI - Usually at this time of the year, Meridian community members are getting ready for the Fourth of July holiday weekend festival.
According to Parks and Recreation Director Luann Maisner, Meridian Township has been providing firework events for the community for over 25 years, which made the decision to cancel this year's Fourth of July firework show extremely difficult.
Although COVID-19 restrictions were lifted, Maisner said it was too short notice to continue with the show. The process of obtaining contracts, permits, and fireworks would have normally started months in advance.
“Back during the planning stages, which were probably back in March and April, when it was time to sign the contract and obtain the permit there was still a lot of uncertainty with COVID,” said Maisner. “Even though we couldn't celebrate the fourth of July, we are hoping to still do something later this year.”
The lack of firework shows this year will likely result in more at-home firework attempts. Fire Marshall Tavis Millerov recommends you leave fireworks to the professionals, but recognizes this year many shows have been cancelled due to COVID-19. Instead, he offers some helpful tips for at home fireworks.
“If you are going to light off your own fireworks they must be on your own property. So if you own it, you can light it off on it,” said Millerov.
Millerov notes that under no circumstances should anyone be operating fireworks under the influence. Discipline for lighting off fireworks under the influence can carry a hefty fine and even jail time.
Sky lanterns are not permitted because they are not classified as fireworks under the Michigan Fireworks Law. Millerov describes these lanterns as “flaming balloons.”
Fireworks are only allowed to be set off from June 30 to July 4 between the hours of 11:00 am and 11:45 pm.
More information about firework safety can be found at the link below.