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Plans set for Independence Day celebration, fireworks show

By Staff | Jun 22, 2018

Toni Milbourne/Chronicle A fireworks display from Gaithersburg, Maryland-based company Digital Lightning illuminates the night sky at last year’s Independence Day event.

Jefferson County Parks and Recreation will offer an Independence Day celebration on June 30 at Sam Michael’s Park. The annual event will be free to the public with gates opening at 5 p.m. Fireworks will go on display at approximately 9:25 p.m. that evening.

“Each year the fireworks event draws 10,000 to 15,000 residents and visitors to Sam Michael’s Park in celebration of Independence Day,” said Jennifer Myers, parks director. “Families are welcome to bring coolers, chairs, blankets – this is the perfect place for an evening picnic before a spectacular show that lights up the sky.”

A variety of activities will be available within the gated attendee area. Business vendors will have booths set up strategically around the park grounds to provide attendees with shopping and information-gathering opportunities. There will be moon bounces and an inflatable slide to provide entertainment for kids.

Guests may bring their own picnic fare – however, no glass containers are allowed within the gated area. Food vendors will also be on site to provide dinner and snacks.

Myers said the event will offer a refillable water bottle-filling station for the first time this year, and encouraged attendees to bring their own refillable bottles.

Toni Milbourne/Chronicle Vincent DiGiorgio, owner of Digital Lightning, works at Sam Michael’s Park last year preparing the site for ignition of the fireworks.

Prior to the fireworks attraction, there will be live entertainment for the crowd to enjoy. Local vocalists will include Chelsea McBee, Matt Denton, Wayne Snow and Riverwood. Additional acts may be confirmed as the event draws nearer.

The main attraction for the night is the fireworks show, presented once again this year by Digital Lightning, a pyrotechnic company from Gaithersburg, Maryland, that has designed the show at Sam Michael’s since 1996. Owned and operated by Vincent and Alysha DiGiorgio, the company is award-winning in its lighting shows and pyrotechnics. It has orchestrated the lighting for multiple White House and Congressional events, as well as for concerts. The company provides pyrotechnic shows in multiple locations during the July 4th holiday season, including Middleburg, Virginia, and Solomons Island, Maryland.

Alysha DiGiorgio, vice president of the company, has said the Jefferson County show is one of her favorites to do. She commended the community support as all dollars to pay for the event are locally raised by businesses and individuals.

“This is a great community event,” Myers said. “Families come to enjoy an afternoon of music, games and fun, and then a great fireworks show. We are thrilled to be able to continue this event once again this year.”

The event is free to the public, although donations are welcome, as the event costs approximately $30,000 a year to host. Skinner Law Firm is once again the presenting sponsor for the annual event.

Toni Milbourne/Chronicle The Jefferson?County Independence Day celebration will feature another fireworks display this year at Sam Michael’s Park on June 30.

Those wishing to contribute to the event may do so as they enter the gated lawn or by via mail to Fireworks Fund c/o Jefferson County Parks and Recreation, 235 Sam Michael’s Lane, Shenandoah Junction, WV 25442. Credit card donations may be made online at www.jcprc.org.