Weather dampens Williamsport festivities

July 04, 2008|By DAN DEARTH


A light drizzle fell as the Crossroads Band played Lynyrd Skynyrd covers to a sparse crowd Friday morning at Byron Memorial Park in Williamsport.

The band was the first of several acts that were booked to provide entertainment at Fireworks in the Park, an event the town has held since 2005 to celebrate the Fourth of July.

"I think the weather is kind of holding us back," Town Councilman Jeff Cline said, referring to the day's rain.

The event usually draws about 3,000 people, who gather early to watch the 45-minute fireworks display at night, Cline said. At noon, about 50 people -- a vast majority of them vendors or performers -- were at the park.


Cline said roughly 70 sponsors and 200 volunteers donated their time and money to stage the event, which typically costs about $11,000.

"It gets kind of patriotic," Cline said. "It's a Norman Rockwell type of thing. I think that's what Williamsport should be most proud of."

Al Korns, a trustee with Rehoboth United Methodist Church on East Salisbury Street, said members of his congregation were selling hot dogs and hamburgers at the event to help pay for a new church near the intersection of Lappans Road and Downsville Pike.

Business was slow early on.

"The rain is keeping the crowd down," Korns said. "We just hope it clears up."

In addition to the bands and vendors, Fireworks in the Park featured a pancake breakfast and a 5K Run for Freedom through town.

Cline said more than 100 runners participated in the race.

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