WORTHINGTON – The Worthington City Council this week took a hard look at whether or not to do fireworks in July. Public Works Director Todd Weitzema asked the council for guidance regarding what the city wants to see, and what the city can spend.
In past years, the city has had a fireworks display on the evening of July 4. Paying for it has been a collaborative effort between the city and the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce, with each entity paying for half of the $12,000 show. In 2015, Radio Works launched the July 3 Beach Bash, which also included fireworks. In the following years, the city has contributed $1,500 to the Beach Bash fireworks, with the Lake Okabena improvement Association, which gets the proceeds from the Bash, contributing the rest of the $4,000 display.
In December 2020, city staff was informed that the Chamber would not be contributing to this year’s display due to budgetary concerns.
After considerable discussion, the council advised Weitzema to plan for fireworks on both July 3 and 4. The bottom line is the city needs to find about $8,500 to fund the portion that wasn’t in the 2021 budget, but Administrator Steve Robinson said it could be done.
“It’s one-sixteenth of one percent of the budget,” he said. “I’m confident we can find a way to fund it. If you want fireworks for two nights, we’ll put our best person on it.”
Radio Works will be moving forward with their Beach Bash on July 3, with details to be announced at a later date as they are put in place.