Photos: Grand Rapids’ Fourth of July celebration 2021

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WOODTV.com 04 July, 2021 - 04:10pm 14 views

What is the 4th of July celebrating?

July 4 – also known as Independence Day – is a time to celebrate America. The holiday marks the day in 1776 when the Second Continental Congress unanimously adopted the Declaration of Independence, signaling the official separation of the 13 original colonies from Great Britain amid the Revolutionary War. al.comWhy do we celebrate July 4th? History, facts about America’s birthday

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Grand Rapids celebrated the Fourth of July with fireworks Saturday.

The festivities kicked off at 6 p.m. at Ah-Nab-Awen Park with a DJ, family activities, food and vendors. The firework display started at 10:30 p.m., and was emceed by Storm Team 8 Chief Meteorologist Bill Steffen.

Hundreds of people gathered there celebrate the holiday, and after the fireworks were canceled last year due to the pandemic, attendees were excited to be back.

“We thought, it’s Grand Rapids, after a year not having them, they might go big,” said Dale Vande Griend.

Mayor Rosalynn Bliss told News 8 she wanted attendees to keep a few things in mind.

“We’re still asking people to be mindful,” Bliss said. “We’re still learning to live with COVID. We’re concerned about the Delta variant. We know individuals who aren’t vaccinated are at greater risk of contracting COVID. We’re asking people to be mindful of that.”

Pyrotechnics started setting up the show at 10 a.m. Saturday morning, with a complex firing system with multiple computers to set the fireworks off.

The show had a wide range of fireworks — from smaller ones to very powerful ones — and some came from other countries.

“Spanish shells are different,” said Gary Richards from Arthur Rozzi Pyrotechnics, explaining they break at the top of the explosion to look similar to a palm tree.

The impressive display lasted about 24 minutes.

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DETROIT (AP) — Cam Davis holed a 50-foot sand shot on the 71st hole of regulation and that propelled him into a five-hole playoff where he outlasted Troy Merritt and Joaquin Niemann to win the Rocket Mortgage Classic for his first PGA Tour victory.

“It’s the only reason I’m sitting here now," Davis said at a news conference alongside the trophy. “To be honest, in my head there wasn’t a thought of trying to hole it."

“Today, all across this nation, we can say with confidence: America is coming back together,” Biden declared as he hosted more than 1,000 service members, first responders and other guests for a July Fourth celebration on the South Lawn of the White House.

A federal report shows 18 people were killed by recreational fireworks in the U.S. alone last year. And more than 15,000 went to the emergency room, according to the Consumer Product Safety commission. Many of those incidents were caused by human error, but it's also important to make sure the fireworks you are using are safe to begin with.

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4th of July celebration in Grand Rapids tonight

WOOD TV8 05 July, 2021 - 10:14am

Thousands look to the sky for Fourth of July fireworks show in Grand Rapids

MLive.com 05 July, 2021 - 10:14am

GRAND RAPIDS, MI -- Tens of thousands of people gathered again in downtown Grand Rapids to watch the return of the annual Fourth of July fireworks show Saturday.

The Saturday night, July 3, display was the first Independence Day fireworks show in Ah-Nab-Awen Park since 2019, after organizers scrapped the display last year amid the pandemic.

Organizers previously said they expected this year’s turnout to rival pre-pandemic levels and they were right with crowds estimated around 50,000.

The display began at 10:30 p.m. and lasted about 25 minutes, with an estimated 22,000 firework shells exploding in array of colors and patterns.

Prior to the fireworks show, people started gathering at 6:30 p.m. in Ah-Nab-Awen Park, 220 Front Ave. NW, for live entertainment, food vendors and family activities.

Three musical acts -- Rob Sparks, Chandler Reed and the Sticky Keys and Funkie Jessie -- played at the event.

Organized by Riverbank Events and Media, the title sponsor for the event this year was Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort in Mount Pleasant.

Other sponsors and partners for this year’s display were Meijer, Grand Rapids, Snap Fitness, LiveSpace and the Amway River Bank Run.

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People pack downtown Grand Rapids to celebrate Fourth of July with annual fireworks show

Fox17 05 July, 2021 - 10:14am

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Crowds of people celebrated the Fourth of July at Ah-Nab-Awen Park in Grand Rapids on Saturday.

The Grand Rapids fireworks, presented by Soaring Eagle Casino, returned after being canceled last year due to COVID-19 concerns. This year’s event was the first large-scale gathering held within the city since Michigan lifted all coronavirus restrictions in June.

“To be honest with you, probably 60 days ago I didn’t think this was going to happen,” said Russ Hines, CEO of Riverbank Events and Media. “When the governor eased the restriction and we realized we could have large gatherings again, we went into hyper-fast mode to try and figure out how to make this happen.”

According to the city’s Office of Special Events, roughly 500 permitted events are held each year.

Organizers say community members needed the connection with one another, which is why they rushed to make this year’s celebration happen.

“That emotional infrastructure is so important to have in community,” said Evette Pittman, special events manager. “When events were basically prohibited, we lost that here in the city, so now that we are fully open and fully back in business, we’re able to rebuild those relationships, those partnerships and collaborations.”

The event featured live entertainment and food vendors.

“Just some family fun,” said Helen Oldes, who was in attendance with her five children. “With everything going on with the pandemic, I feel like it’s the perfect time to get out now.”

“It just makes me feel alive again,” said Maureen Dorough, a Grand Rapids resident. “It feels so good. We moved here a year and a half ago and my husband retired. The idea was move downtown and enjoy all the festivities, so we moved down here, he retires, [then] COVID hits. We’ve been waiting for this.”

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Fireworks return to West Michigan for Fourth of July

FOX 17 WXMI 05 July, 2021 - 10:14am

East Grand Rapids restaurant asks people to be patient, reminding people of worker shortage

Fox17 05 July, 2021 - 10:14am

EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — At Carolina Lowcountry Kitchen, the servers’ shirts say it all.

The East Grand Rapids restaurant is short staffed.

“Easily at times [we] have had 20 servers,” said Brienne Postema, co-owner. “Right now we only have about six.”

As COVID-19 restrictions have lifted, businesses in West Michigan have struggled to fill open positions.

Postema believes a number of workers left the hospitality industry in search of a profession that offered more stability or allowed them to work from home.

The lack of workers is forcing Carolina Lowcountry Kitchen to close down up to two days a week and limit its capacity. Postema says her staff bought the t-shirts late last month in hopes that customers would be more understanding of the delayed service.

“The majority of people are wonderful; the majority of people come out, and we’re very up-front and honest with people,” said Postema.

Postema says it’s a needed reminder as the area prepares for its first “post-pandemic” celebration.

“Everybody’s ready to go back out,” said Postema. “We really want to be there to serve them, but it takes time to get to the right spot, to make sure everybody gets the good experience when they go out and the staff itself doesn’t get squished and smashed.”

To apply for a job at Carolina Lowcountry Kitchen, click here.

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