Boom! Ka-bang! Sizzle. Ahhh…
Fireworks! Picnics, blankets and lawn chairs, food vendors, a DJ — the Ridgefield Family Fourth will again turn the fields around Ridgefield High School into lawns of summer fun as townspeople relax waiting for dusk to fall and for the skies to light up with a $40,000 pyrotechnic show.
The annual fireworks extravaganza is planned for Wednesday, July 4, with a rain date of Thursday, July 5.
While the big show in the sky will come when it’s dark enough, the gates open at 6 p.m. and folks are encourage to come early for picnics and dinners with family and friends.
Grilling and alcoholic drinks are prohibited, but a variety of food vendors will be on site.
“While there are no grills allowed, guests really pull out all the stops when setting up their own dining areas including tables and chairs, coolers and games,” said Jennifer Zinzi, Chamber of Commerce director and a member of the Family Fourth committee.
“Feel free to toss a Frisbee or play a game of corn hole as the DJ entertains the crowd before the show.”
Parking passes are $20 per car at Ridgefield High School — where there’ll be handicapped parking — and also at the secondary parking lots at Scotland and Barlow
Mountain elementary schools. Shuttle buses will provide rides to and from the Scotland-Barlow lots to the high school fields.
The parking passes will be available at both parking sites — RHS and Scotland-Barlow — with the $20 payable in cash or by check at the sites.
Parking passes are also being sold in advance at Ridgefield Town Hall, the Chamber of Commerce office at 13 Grove Street, at in-town branches of Fairfield County Bank, and at the Ridgefield Parks and Recreation Center.
All proceeds from the sale of parking passes go to the Family Fourth Committee. There are no refunds due to weather or other circumstances.
Organized by the Ridgefield Family Fourth Committee, the fireworks are once again sponsored by Fairfield County Bank.
“Ridgefield was a battleground during our nation’s birth and the Ridgefield Family Fourth Fireworks provide the opportunity to bring together family and friends to celebrate our independence. A chance to celebrate the strength of our community both past and present. Fairfield County Bank is proud to support such a wonderful tradition,” said Stephen Wooters, the bank’s executive vice president.
Wooters plans to be there with his family and their Winnebago, enjoying the evening and handing out glow-sticks on behalf of the bank.
“We’ll be there. Everybody feel free to say hello,” he said.
Bring an appetite
Zinzi talked up the food offerings by vendors.
“There will be a variety of food available for purchase on-site from hamburgers served up by Zawack Shack and Only the Hungry to gourmet hot dogs with all the toppings from Main Street’s own Chez Lenard,” she said. “Big Little Taco once again joins the culinary line-up along with some sweet treats from Skip’s Good Humor Truck and Gigi’s Family Ice Cream.
“We are grateful to our food vendors for once again joining us at the Family Fourth celebration.” Zinzi said. “It adds to the spectacular evening by having delicious food available on site.”
Novelty items such as glow bracelets, hats, stuffed animals and more will also be available for purchase.
“Each year the cost to put on the pyrotechnic display is about $40,000. Fairfield County Bank contributes a generous donation of $20,000 and the balance is paid through the parking pass sales and vendors,” Zinzi said.
“While Fairfield County Bank continues their generosity year after year in support of this all-American tradition for the town, it would be fantastic to get some additional, new sponsors on board in years to come. This is a time honored tradition in town, and community support — both financially and as committee members — is critical to the viability of the event.”