The fireworks on the Fourth of July in 2019. (Ron Cooper/Special to Salem Reporter)
Salem’s signature fireworks show which draws thousands to Riverfront Park each year is the latest in a string of events that have been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. But there’s still hope for those who want to see a dazzling display.
The Salem Keizer Volcanoes got creative so guests could still enjoy a firework show, but this year it will be viewed from inside a car instead of from the stands.
Under phase two restrictions in Marion and Polk counties, no more than 100 people can gather outdoors. As a result drive-in movies, church services and even funerals have cropped up in recent months.
On Saturday, the stadium is hosting a Fourth of July event in their parking lot with a rock concert by JT & the Tourists, a patriotic tribute and a firework display starting at 10 p.m.
Volcanoes CEO Mickey Walker said they chose to do the drive-in show because it was the easiest way to maintain social distancing and they had seen other minor league teams do something similar.
The Volcanoes previously held drive-in firework shows on June 19 and 26.
Normally, there are 1,200 spots in the parking lot, but since they’re spacing cars apart there will only be 500 spots and tickets are selling fast. Tickets are $20 per carload and can be purchased online.
As of Wednesday morning, there were only 50 tickets left.
“There’s not going to be a lot of places that are gathering for fireworks in the valley this year,” Walker said. “It’s got some really good responses and I think we’re going to fill up here pretty fast.”
The town of Independence is still celebrating its annual Indy Days with a two-day event starting Friday, July 3.
There will be carnival games, block parties and food trucks around town.
Each night will end with a baseball-themed drive-in movie at the Independence Sports Park.
The weekend events come as Gov. Kate Brown held a news conference Wednesday urging Oregonians to have tame Fourth of July celebrations by staying close to home and limiting backyard barbecues and picnics to only relatives.
The Oregon State Fire Marshal recommends storing fireworks out of children’s reach, keeping pets indoors, soaking used fireworks in a bucket of water and properly disposing of fireworks in the trash.
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Have a story tip? Contact reporter Saphara Harrell at 503-549-6250, [email protected] or @daisysaphara.