While organizers made the decision to cancel what would have been the fifth annual Star Spangled Celebration at Mack Park, the community can still celebrate Independence Day by watching the traditional fireworks show.
Because Mack Park will close after 7 p.m. on Saturday, organizers say the display is expected to be bigger and higher than in past years so people can see it from afar.
Mack Park and the swimming pool will be open during the day on July 4 as normal (from noon to 6 p.m.).
Tune your radio to 106.3 FM to listen to patriotic music to accompany the fireworks display.
As in the past, the following locations will be accessible during the celebration:
• Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex parking lot on Wayne Avenue (the VIP parking area is not available).
• IUP Stadium North and South Parking Lots (IUP South Campus lots near the ball fields are not available.) The university will temporarily close University Drive on South Campus to through traffic to facilitate restricted access to parking lots in that area.
• 119 Professional Center parking lot
• Fairgrounds parking lot off Hospital Road
• Saving Grace Church parking lot
• Indiana Mall parking lot
During the fireworks, parking lot usage should only be for parking purposes. To that end:
• Stay near your car.
• No grilling in any lot.
• No tents or long-term gatherings in any lot.
• Be respectful of the space and take any trash with you when you leave.
• Wear a mask if you cannot maintain a 6-foot distance from others.
The fireworks are being sponsored by Colonial Motor Mart, The Reschini Group, Joe Canton Crimson Court, First Commonwealth Bank, InFirst Bank, Indiana Regional Medical Center, Renda Broadcasting, S&T Bank, Sheetz, Summit Church, Delaney Automotive Group, Kiwanis Club of Indiana, New Story, Penn Mechanical, TRH Architects, Helwig Insurance Agency and Sheriff Bob Fyock.
State Police at the Troop A, Indiana Station also are preparing for the Mack Park display.
Indiana Station Commander Lt. Joseph A. Loughran is asking spectators to be respectful of the rights of private property and business owners and to keep roadways and rights of way open to traffic and emergency vehicles.
In the event of an emergency, Loughran said, it is vitally important that police, fire, medical and other first responders have clear access to area roadways, alleys and rights of way. He said members of the state police Indiana Patrol Unit will work to assure that access.
The state police also are watching for fireworks elsewhere in the Indiana area over the holiday weekend.
Troopers want to remind the public that Pennsylvania residents who are 18 or older may purchase and use “Class C” or “consumer-grade” fireworks, which include firecrackers, Roman candles, bottle rockets and similar fireworks that contain a maximum of 50 milligrams of explosive material.
However, there are restrictions. Fireworks cannot be discharged:
• On public or private property without express permission of the property owner.
• From or within a motor vehicle or building.
• Toward a motor vehicle or building.
• Within 150 feet of an occupied structure, whether or not a person is actually present.
• While the person is under the influence of alcohol, a controlled substance, or another drug.
He said more information can be found on the www.psp.pa.gov website.
Loughran also said the public should check with their municipalities about local ordinances governing the use of fireworks.