San Ramon cancels its popular July 4 fireworks show

Started in 1985, annual event was one of last in East Bay

San Ramon's traditional July 4 aerial fireworks display -- which grew tremendously popular year after year, especially as neighboring cities eliminated their fireworks shows, has been cancelled by city leaders this year.

It could, however, return in 2013.

The aerial Independence Day fireworks at San Ramon's Central Park, which began in 1985 from the lawn of Toyota in the Bishop Ranch Business Park, was a community tradition which remained popular with residents. They said their city identified strongly with the annual pyrotechnics event. After all, San Ramon incorporated only

two years before the first aerial fireworks were launched into the evening sky.

There is still a possibility that the aerial fireworks could return next year. The City Council voted 5-0 to direct city staff to devise a plan that would address City Hall and the police department's concern over numerous public safety issues.

Within that vote, the council also directed staff to proceed with planning for an Independence Day celebration at Central Park for this July, but without the possibility of ground pyrotechnics. To include ground fireworks at the event was originally proposed by Karen McNamara, interim parks and community services director, and city staff.

Staff to devise a proposed ordinance designed to

legalize so-called "safe and sane" fireworks. If approved, it would apply to future Independence Day celebrations, but not this year's.

San Ramon was one of the few cities left in the Bay Area to hold a July 4 fireworks display. Livermore discontinued its fireworks show. And, earlier this year, Concord decided to cancel its display beginning this summer. Martinez is the nearest city to still present a city-sponsored July 4 aerial fireworks show.

Only three San Ramon residents, two of whom were teenagers, spoke before the City Council, to ask them not to eliminate the aerial fireworks show.

There was no public outcry at the council meeting, which was not held in the council chambers at City Hall, but at the Dougherty Station Community Center in the city's Dougherty Valley. The meeting followed a reception there for former Mayor Abram Wilson and former Councilwoman Carol Rowley.


Like this comment
Posted by Bob
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Mar 1, 2012 at 8:15 am

"Only three San Ramon residents, two of whom were teenagers, spoke before the City Council"

What difference does it make that two of the three who spoke at the City Council were teenagers? What implication is Kevin Wing trying to make? Would he write "one of who was elderly" or "two of whom were Asian" with regards to future meetings?

Like this comment
Posted by tiki3
a resident of San Ramon
on Mar 1, 2012 at 8:55 am

I feel the "only three San Ramon residents.." comment might give the wrong impression on how much interest the residents have taken in this. Here is a quote from Web Link : "City officials wanted to gauge input from residents on the matter. More than 600 e-mails were received during a period of several days leading up to Tuesday night's council meeting. Among those e-mails, nearly half -- or 296 e-mails -- were in support of continuing with the fireworks display. "
The San Ramon Patch (erroneously) ran front page articles about how the council had decided to cancel the fireworks immediately after that February 14th meeting and for days after. I wonder how much of an impact that had on the turnout for this meeting (at a changed venue, at that).

Like this comment
Posted by Pepper
a resident of Old Towne
on Mar 1, 2012 at 9:41 am

Pepper is a registered user.

I just want to know why cities can have fireworks any time they want but the citizens can't even burn wood in their own fireplace?

Like this comment
Posted by mommyofthree
a resident of San Ramon
on Mar 2, 2012 at 12:30 pm

what a sad world we live in. for some reason i don't believe the fireworks will ever return to san ramon. next year the tab will escalate to $1 million dollars. maybe we can watch the fireworks on tv...woo hoo!!

Like this comment
Posted by Elizabeth
a resident of Dublin
on Jun 27, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Why did they cancel the SAN RAMON 2012 fireworks show that's RIDICULOUS! I'm very disappointed. Please bring the fireworks back.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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