Fireworks 3

ST. MARYS — This year’s Independence Day celebration, which takes place July 3 in St. Marys, has been moved to a new location.

At the St. Marys Area Chamber of Commerce meeting April 2, members voted to approve the new location — St. Marys Area High School, with “shoot-off” from the practice soccer field, said Board President Andrew Mohney.

The location was moved once before years ago, but failed because of the weather, he added.

“I’d like to turn it into an actual event, rather than just the fireworks,” he said, “so, we need a different venue.”

The SMACOC encourages the community to become more involved to make the event a success, he said.

The event would involve many community entities, like school booster clubs and bands, nonprofit organizations and more, Mohney says.

“Some of the main reasons we’d like to try a different location are safety, parking and access,” Mohney said. “Parking has become a large issue the past decade. The current site of the fireworks does not provide much parking, forcing people to park anywhere they can.”

The firework company the St. Marys Chamber utilizes is “very excited” about the new location, Mohney adds, since it’s much more accessible for setup and igniting of the fireworks.

“Although we are still in the planning stage of this event, we are excited to see what will become of it,” he said.

The location provides higher elevation, which should allow the display to be visible from most parts of town, Mohney says.

“Some areas will be affected, but we are hoping the larger venue will encourage the community to gather at the high school and support the event as a whole,” he said.