Dayton, Ohio – In an unfortunate turn of events, the cherished Fourth of July Festival that usually lights up the heart of Downtown Dayton will not proceed this year.
The streets of Downtown Dayton are customarily bustling with vendors and festive citizens every Fourth of July, but this year’s summer will witness a quiet contrast.
“The city has somewhere between 1,700 to 1,800 employees,” said Stephen Marcellus, city recreation department deputy director. “We struggle as a department just putting on events and programs.”
The widely-loved festival, known for drawing crowds in the thousands to downtown, has been called off due to an insufficient workforce to ensure a safe execution of the event.
“With the number of vacancies the city has we’re just taking precautionary measures to make sure everybody’s going to be fine,” Marcellus said.
Significantly impacted by this cancellation is the Lock 27 Brewing Company, situated in what would have been the epicenter of the festival’s bustle.
“It was a little disappointing to hear that news today,” said Colin Barnhart, Lock 27 sales and products manager.
Barnhart says he does understand the city’s reasoning.
“Everybody has to do what’s best for them,” Barnhart said.
He isn’t overly concerned with losing business.
“There’s still so much going on especially that time of year down here,” Barnhart said.
Despite the inevitable decrease in crowd size due to the festival’s cancellation, a decent gathering is still anticipated, thanks to the availability of sufficient personnel to host the highly-anticipated fireworks display.
The fireworks, a mainstay of the event, are slated for launch on the evening of July 3, around 10 p.m. To secure an unobstructed view of this spectacle, the public is advised to head to Kettering Field.