Fireworks extravaganza to bring family fun, music to the park

By: Kristyne E. Demske | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published June 17, 2015

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ST. CLAIR SHORES — The plans are in place for fireworks to light up the shores of Lake St. Clair at the end of the month, when the annual St. Clair Shores Fireworks Extravaganza comes to Veterans Memorial Park.


Dennis George Karwoski, of the St. Clair Shores Activities Committee, said a change in vendor for the fireworks means the city is getting more bang for its buck.


“For the same amount of money, they are providing us over double what we’ve been getting in the past years,” he said of Wolverine Fireworks in Saginaw.


Gates will open at 2 p.m. June 26 at Veterans Memorial Park, on Jefferson Avenue at Masonic Boulevard.


The show will begin at dusk.


The city is selling admission wristbands in advance at Civic Arena, 20000 Stephens St., and at First State Bank locations in the city, for $2. Five hundred parking passes are also available at Civic Arena for $5, which will guarantee a parking space in the lot across Jefferson Avenue from the park.


For the first time this year, the Activities Committee will charge $3 admission at the gate the day of the fireworks.

“The actual cost is $40,000-$50,000 each year,” Karwoski said. “No tax dollars are used to produce this event.”


Instead, admission fees, donations and sponsorships pay for the event. A rain date is set for June 27, but Karwoski noted they’ve been rained out just once in 30 years.


“We’re one of the ... few communities that have a fireworks display now, and I think that it’s a great evening for family, friends to get together to enjoy a great show,” said Parks and Recreation Director Greg Esler.


Karwoski said there will be plenty of fun for the entire family throughout the day.


Outrageous Jams DJ will spin tunes from 2-5 p.m., and Elite Entertainment will take over at 5 p.m. and play music until the start of the show. National Coney Island and Mastro’s Ice Cream will be selling food, and the park concession stand will be open, as well.


The Splash Pad will be open until 8 p.m., and there will be volleyball on the beach, horseshoes and bocce ball. Plus, title sponsor First State Bank will bring back its popular face painters.


Kathleen Zenisek, marketing director for First State Bank, said they’ll have four face painters on hand from 4:30-7:30 p.m.


“It’s been complimentary for many years,” Zenisek said. “It’s important that we support the community, and that is what St. Clair Shores is needing help on, and so that is where we put our resources.”


There will also be inflatable bouncers from 2-5 p.m. and a craft area open from 3-5 p.m.


This year, the fireworks show will be once more set to music, which will be broadcast on speakers throughout the park and also on a local FM radio station, to be announced on signs outside the park the day of the event.


As always, pets and alcohol are prohibited.


“This is a family event, and alcohol is strictly prohibited and coolers are subject to search,” Karwoski said.


Visitors are welcome to bring their own food and drinks into the park, however.


“Come early and enjoy the day,” he said.


South on Jefferson Avenue at Redeemer Lutheran Church, Preschool and Kindergarten, they’ll be hosting a party on the grounds of the church, at 30003 Jefferson Ave., starting at 5 p.m. The highlight of the party will be a contest to pick the most patriotically dressed toddler ages 3-5, with voting at 7 p.m. The top three winners will win a month’s free tuition at the school.


The St. Clair Shores Fireworks Extravaganza opens to the public at 2 p.m. June 26 at Veterans Memorial Park. For more information, check out the St. Clair Shores Activities Committee on Facebook.

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