PORTSMOUTH, OH (WOWK) – With the CDC guidelines and policies still in place due to the coronavirus pandemic, many large-scale firework displays have been canceled. An organization, known as “Friends of Portsmouth” has decided to continue with its Fourth of July plans with only a few adjustments.
One of those adjustments includes a change of locations. In order to maintain social distancing, the organization chose the former NFL Spartan Stadium’s practice field as the perfect place to hold the display.
The decision was made with space in mind.
We plan on pulling cars in. We’re going to have them parked spaced out.Friends of Portsmouth Assistant Director Bryan Smith
“Friends of Portsmouth” Assistant Director Bryan Smith says each car will be spaced out at least 6-feet apart. Those attending may be allowed to set up lawn chairs in front of their cars maintaining the same distance from others around them.
Residents like Annabelle Pitts and her son Kaiden, look forward to the display each year, but they were worried it would be canceled this year.
“They were talking about canceling it and people couldn’t see fireworks at all,” Pitts said regarding the regularly planned fireworks display.
Smith says while they have experienced major changes like not allowing food trucks on the property, their plan to “light up the sky” is expected to continue.
The drive-in aspect of the event has received positive feedback from the community, especially those who live close by. Pitts lives fairly close to the stadium and will be able to watch from her house this year.
Even though she won’t be participating in the drive-in, Pitts says she believes it is a good idea for more reasons than one.
The first year he was born we actually did the drive-up over on the Kentucky side, so it was pretty easy, especially with kids … Being in your car like drive-up movie theaters are a thing right now. So, why not fireworks?Annabelle Pitts, Portsmouth, Ohio resident
Parking will be limited for the event. Smith says they are expecting to be able to hold a little more than 500 cars for the event. Those who own watercraft are encouraged to watch from Ohio River as well.
Members of the organization will start parking cars around 7 p.m., on Saturday, July 4. The display is expected to start at 10 p.m. For more information and updates on the event, click here.