BERLIN – Town officials agreed to postpone July’s fireworks display in hopes that it can be held this fall.
At a meeting Monday, the Berlin Town Council voted unanimously to delay the July 3 fireworks display until later in the year.
“There will be an appropriate time,” Mayor Gee Williams said.
Ivy Wells, the town’s economic and community development director, told the council the town would not be able to hold the fireworks scheduled for July 3 at the Northern Worcester Athletic Complex because the fire marshal’s office was not currently issuing fireworks permits. She said the town could instead postpone the fireworks until next July, which would mean losing $2,500 of the town’s $5,000 deposit, or choose another date this year. She said a “Best of Berlin” festival was being planned and that the fireworks could, for example, be held then. She added, however, that the town had planned to coordinate with Worcester County to host an all-day event on July 3 that would have ended with the evening’s fireworks display and could still do that on whatever new date was chosen.
Williams said he thought the town would have opportunities to host the fireworks after Labor Day.
“I’m encouraged that there’s options, especially after Labor Day,” Williams said. “Between now and Labor Day everybody’s just trying to get back on the horse.”
Councilman Zack Tyndall pointed out that the $2,500 would be lost whether officials made their decision now or in a few months.
“There’s nothing lost to kick the can down the road a little bit,” he said, adding that he thought the town should aim to hold the fireworks sometime later in 2020.
Wells said that she’d consulted the fireworks company and they’d told her Labor Day weekend was fully booked but added that there would be other potential dates. She said as of now Small Town Throw Down was still set to occur in Berlin in September but said that a decision hadn’t yet been made regarding the Fiddlers Convention.
“In a way we’re fortunate we have very few events in the summer,” Williams said. “Spring and fall are our seasons of events.”
The council voted unanimously to postpone the July 3 fireworks and to come up with a new date in the coming months.
While many area municipalities have canceled their July 4 fireworks, Ocean City and Ocean Pines have not yet made decisions.
“As of this week, Ocean Pines is still hoping to host a July 4 fireworks display, assuming Gov. Hogan loosens his restrictions on social gatherings in time,” said Debbie Donahue, director of recreation and parks in Ocean Pines.