Grand Lake mulls canceling Fourth of July fireworks due to COVID-19 |

Grand Lake mulls canceling Fourth of July fireworks due to COVID-19

The coronavirus could threaten Grand Lake’s Fourth of July fireworks display as town officials are expected to soon make a decision on the summertime pyrotechnics.

While the town is trying to get a read on what could happen with the COVID-19 pandemic this summer, no one on the Grand Lake Board of Trustees seemed too worried about a lack of crowds over the Fourth of July when the town’s annual fireworks show came up for discussion April 27.

Rocky Mountain National Park reported record crowds last year. Depending on how and when things open back up across the state, town officials are fairly confident there could be a rush of vacation travel in July.

While officials were sure Grand Lake will see large crowds numbering in the thousands for Independence Day, they don’t know what social distancing guidelines will look like. They also believe that if Grand Lake does fireworks this year, people will likely line up blanket to blanket as they try to secure the best real estate.

The town wouldn’t save any money canceling the Fourth of July fireworks this year — they’re already purchased — but Grand Lake could push the fireworks back into another celebration, perhaps Buffalo Days, and produce a boost for business later in the summer.

The earlier the town makes the decision on the Fourth of July fireworks, the more notice local lodging properties and businesses will get with their customer bookings and the better opportunity Grand Lake will have to promote a show later in the year. If Grand Lake waits to make the call, those opportunities could be lost.

Grand Lake might have one of the few remaining Fourth of July fireworks show in Colorado’s mountains, but whether it goes off this year remains in question. Town leaders didn’t seem inclined to cancel the fireworks during their last meeting, but given the uncertainty with COVID-19, it could be the next big event to fall in a long list of COVID-19 cancellations and closures.

The town manager confirmed that fireworks will be on the agenda for next Monday’s workshop and regular meetings, as will bids for the street scape project and a number of other items.

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