Fireworks cancellation doesn’t dampen Fourth |

Fireworks cancellation doesn’t dampen Fourth

Lu Snyder

FRISCO – The fact that fireworks were scheduled in Denver Thursday and none in Frisco, didn’t stop Mary Ann Mayo from coming to Summit County to celebrate the Fourth of July.

“I do miss the fireworks,” the Denver resident said. “But there’s a lot more to appreciate up here than the fireworks.”

Fireworks didn’t even play a part in the decision for her and her husband to spend their holiday weekend in Summit County, she said.

“The heat did.”

Though some tourist-oriented business owners here might have been apprehensive about a Fourth of July celebration without fireworks – and how that could affect visits from out-of-towners – there didn’t seem to be a lack of people in the county Thursday.

Crowds lined the streets in Breckenridge, Dillon and Frisco for the annual town parades as the day’s celebrations began, and lodging companies reported strong visitor numbers going into the holiday weekend.

Though some Front Range towns proceeded with fireworks this year, most of the mountain towns across Colorado – including Frisco and Breckenridge – chose to cancel the tradition because of the state’s numerous wildfires and extreme fire danger.

No one seemed to be complaining.

“It doesn’t bother me,” said Tracie Copple, who was visiting from Denver for the day. Copple said she was looking forward to going to bed early knowing she wouldn’t be kept up by the sound of firecrackers.

Silverthorne resident Michael Kurth said he supports the towns’ decision to cancel fireworks this year.

“I love fireworks, but given the conditions in the state and the fires, it was a prudent decision,” Kurth said. “(Fireworks are) not a requirement to have fun.”

Indeed, there was a wide array of activities to keep people busy in the county Thursday. The Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue hosted a pancake breakfast in Frisco, there were parades in Frisco, Breckenridge and Dillon, and a boat parade on Lake Dillon. Concerts featured a variety of music – there was folk, funk, blues, jazz, classical and more.

And there were the outdoor activities about which Summit County boasts, including fishing, boating, hiking and bicycling.

All in all, people seemed to be too busy having fun to cry over the lack of colorful explosions in the air this year. Most, like Kurth, expressed understanding and agreement with the reasoning behind the cancellation.

“We totally understand,” said Doug Waddell of Tucson. “We’re from Arizona, and it’s dry as a bone there.”

“I understand,” said Jay Sandstrom of Littleton, who was visiting the county with his wife, Laura, kids and extended family.

Laura Sandstrom said the kids didn’t seem to care there weren’t fireworks this year. Their 5-year-old daughter, Natalie, said she misses the fireworks but can wait until next year to see them.

The Sandstroms said they have friends who were evacuated by the Hayman fire recently.

And like many other Summit County residents, Jay Sandstrom’s mother, who lives in Silverthorne, is nervous about forest fires, he said.

“I’d rather be safe than sorry,” Jay Sandstrom said.

Firefighters and law enforcement officials were heavily staffed Thursday – in anticipation of illegal campfires, fireworks, and potential forest fires – but as of 9 p.m., the Fourth was relatively quiet in Summit County, with only a few reports of illegal fireworks.

Lu Snyder can be reached at 970-668-3998 x203 or

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