Spectators at the 60th annual Ithaca Community Fireworks Show on Monday, July 2, are reminded to park safely and sanely. In particular, parking on state and county highways and road shoulders is not permitted, especially on route 96-B near Ithaca College and along routes 13, 34, 79, and 96.
State and city police, Tompkins County Sheriff’s deputies, and other public safety officials will patrol these and other areas, according to Fran Benedict, chairman of the volunteer committee that organizes the fireworks show. The aerial display, shot from atop Ithaca College’s South Hill campus, begins about 9:45 p.m.
“Spectators who park along a highway before the fireworks show might think it’s a safe area, but after the show it’s very dark and walking along the shoulder or crossing highways at that time creates an unsafe situation.” He added, “It’s not only unsafe, it’s illegal.”
An alternative to using personal cars is available, especially because of construction detours, Benedict explained. The local public-transit operator — TCAT — offers free bus service from downtown Ithaca to the Ithaca College campus. Shuttle buses will leave from the shelter near the Tompkins County Public Library on East Green Street every 15 minutes beginning at 6:30 p.m.
Following the fireworks, buses will be given priority exit routing, Benedict added. For more information about the TCAT “fireworks express,” call 277-RIDE (7433). Additional information can be found 24 hours a day at communityfireworks.com.
Benedict also reminds spectators about donations for the fireworks show. “The show belongs to the community, but we can’t guarantee future shows without donations. Just $3 from each person who watches the show — whether it’s from South Hill or surrounding hillsides, parks, and backyards — would cover the cost of this year’s show and build a reserve for future shows.”
Ithaca College has opened its campus parking lots, fields, and facilities for the annual fireworks show, and dozens of volunteers, including employees of the Tompkins Trust Company, will be on the Ithaca College campus to collect donations from the public.
“These volunteers will have special outfits and ID cards that identify them. No other groups or individuals are authorized to collect donations on behalf of the fireworks committee — on the campus or elsewhere in the community,” Benedict stressed.
Rain date for the Ithaca Community Fireworks Show is July 3.
Media partners helping to promote this year’s fireworks show are Cayuga Radio Group (WHCU, WNYY, WYXL, and WQNY) and The Ithaca Journal. Additional support is provided by Tompkins Trust Company, Cornell University, Ithaca College, and TCAT.