From Oona Goodin-Smith at the Inquirer:
There will be no official Fourth of July fireworks display in Philadelphia this year.
Instead, the rockets’ red glare will be a recording of last year’s pre-pandemic firework display over the Philadelphia Museum of Art. And, like most of the city’s July 4 celebrations this year, it can be viewed on television, as health officials continue to attempt to tame the spread of the coronavirus.
Though city officials announced in May that Philadelphia’s 2020 weeklong Wawa Welcome America bash will be held virtually, it remained unclear whether the 28-year-old festival would still host its massive Independence Day fireworks show, which typically brings thousands of spectators to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
However, on Tuesday, Welcome America and the city said the 2020 show is off, a decision made “with the health of the community top of mind.”
“We believe traditional fireworks displays encourage people to gather in close proximity which is not recommended at this time due to potential spread of COVID-19,” said city spokesperson Deana Gamble.
Luckily for us, we’ll be able to see and hear fireworks tonight, tomorrow, Thursday, Friday, and perhaps for the rest of the summer with folks setting them off illegally.
That’s the irony here, the fact that we won’t actually have fireworks on the night we should have them, yet they’ve been blasting daily for three weeks now. And I’m not so sure that the city putting together a coordinated display encourages people to “gather in close proximity,” since I think most folks typically go out to their front stoop or back patio or walk up to a roof deck to watch them. Dunno.
Mayor Kenney actually touched on the crazy ass fireworks thing today, but just reiterated the rules and explained why it’s nearly impossible to enforce them:
The first two bullets in the second tweet are the real kicker. Most people set these off too close to occupied buildings, and if they do go to a park or a rec center to do it, they’re doing it without written permission, so I’d gather that 99.99999% of what you’re hearing in the city right now is breaking one or more guidelins.
Anyway, no Fourth of July fireworks in Philly this year. Everything is canceled. Sports, holiday gatherings, maybe Jimmy Kimmel, etc.