Diamond Bar residents looking to see some fireworks on July 4 will have to look elsewhere this year, as the city has decided to cancel its annual celebration.
The city announced that they are suspending festivities in 2013 since they don't have a place that will work for setting off the fireworks.
"Fourth of July Blast was first held in 2001, and moved to Diamond Bar High School in 2006 when outgrew its original location at Sycamore Canyon Park," a press release from the city states. "Due to construction work at the high school, last year’s event was held at Lorbeer Middle School."
"Both Diamond Bar High School and Lorbeer Middle schools are currently undergoing construction and therefore unavailable for this year’s event," the release said.
According to city officials, staff looked into another seven possible sites for the event, but none of them would pan out.
“Because pyrotechnics are involved, special care needs to be taken to ensure that the event site accommodates safe spectator areas, as well as adequate firework lighting and fallout zones,” the city’s Director of Community Services Bob Rose said. “The seven sites we evaluated did not meet these requirements."
"We look forward to bringing back Fourth of July next year in time for our year-long series of events planned to commemorate the 25th anniversary of Diamond Bar’s incorporation as a City," Rose added.
Patch is told that approximately 9,000 people normally attend the event.
This cancelation will save the city more than $50,000, according to a city council agenda, which indicates $46,800 (plus Sheriff’s Department costs of about $9,175) were spent on the fireworks show in 2012.
City council approved the cancellation after the Community Services Department- along with pyrotechnic specialists- "scouted" Diamond Bar for potential event sites, and turned up empty handed, according to city spokeswoman Cecilia Arellano.
Here are the seven alternatives that were discussed, and what the city discovered upon their scouting:
- AQMD West Parking Lot (Viewing Area)
Shooting Area and Fallout Zone: Roof of City Hall / City Hall Parking Lot and Copley Drive
Comments: Tall trees in viewing area and adjacent to shooting area could make viewing difficult. Viewing area on asphalt during hot weather could add to viewer discomfort. Also, there are no homes within easy walking distance of City Hall. An alternative provided by Pyro Spectaculars representatives is to shoot smaller shells from the roof of City Hall. For a variety of reasons, including concern for the new solar panels on the roof, staff does not recommend shooting fireworks from the roof of City Hall.
- Diamond Bar Center
Shooting Area and Fallout Zone: Parking lot east of Diamond Bar Center. Viewing area from the grass fields at Summit Ridge Park.
Comments: Lack of adequate parking for spectators and long distances to shuttle lots will create a logistical challenge accommodating a large crowd. Also, dry brush on slopes adjacent to shooting area makes this site hazardous. There is a private rental scheduled for the DBC on July 4, so if this site is selected, the rental will have to be cancelled. Agenda # Study Session Meeting Date: 2/5/2013
- Sycamore Canyon Park (Viewing Area)
Shooting Area and Fallout Zone: Diamond Bar Golf Course
Comments: Sycamore Canyon Park is much too small to host the Fireworks Show now. Attendance has about doubled since last held at this park in 2005.
- YMCA / Pony Baseball Fields
Shooting Area and Fallout Zone: Vacant lot across flood control channel in City of Industry (west of YMCA building) Viewing area from grass fields at YMCA / Pony Baseball Fields.
Comments: The vacant lot proposed by Pyro Spectaculars representatives as the shooting area is usually covered with 3-feet tall dry weeds in July, making the site unusable for fireworks.
- Mt. Calvary / Lorbeer Middle School
Shooting Area and Fallout Zone: Mt. Calvary Parking lot and grass field
Comments: Viewing area from grass football field at Lorbeer. Pyro Spectaculars representatives determined the shooting area and fallout zone available at Mt. Calvary is too small.
- Pantera Park / Pantera Elementary School
Shooting Area and Fallout Zone: Pantera Elementary School Viewing area from grass fields at Pantera Park.
Comments: Too much dry brush on slopes adjacent to shooting area makes this site too hazardous.
- Heritage Park / Castle Rock Elementary School
Shooting Area and Fallout Zone: Heritage Park Viewing area from grass fields at Castle Rock Elementary.
Comments: Pyro Spectaculars representatives determined the shooting area and fallout zone available at Heritage Park is too small.
What do YOU think? Are you sad to see the fireworks go this year? Tell us in the comments.