The “best small town fireworks show” has been given the green light to take place at Monument Lake this year.
After careful consideration the Monument board of trustees unanimously approved for Monument to host the fireworks. The board had some concerns about hosting the fireworks initially and asked the Palmer Lake Fireworks Committee to consult with Chief Jake Shirk of the Monument Police Department and the pyrotechnics company about their concerns.
Mark Kirkland, owner of Kirkland Photography and vice-president of the Palmer Lake Fireworks Committee, presented a report from the pyrotechnics committee to the board of trustees and a map showing where the fireworks would be set off and the parking and viewing areas. Property owner Ernie Biggs has given his permission for people to park on his property.
Kirkland said there would be a $5 parking fee to help generate funds for future fireworks shows and anyone parked west of the railroad tracks would have to leave through Monument Lake Road to Colo. 105.
“It is a good opportunity as a community to show the world what we really have,” Kirkland said. “It helps the economy of our area to keep new faces coming up here and enjoying what we have to offer.”
The board of trustees had concerns about people parking on side streets and at businesses and how the downtown merchants feel about the fireworks show.
John Dominowski, owner of the Front Street Square, said he welcomes it.
“Our shopping center won't be open that day. Happy to open it up for parking, happy to do whatever we can to assist as far as our property goes,” Dominowski said.
Kirkland said he understands the concerns and there will always be some objections but people have to think about the long-term economic health of the area. He said the visitors to the area on the Fourth of July will be return to fish in the lake, shop and eat at the local restaurants.
“These little stay-cations that are exploding because of the way our economy is; we're a natural stay-cation location. It would be nice to see that the bump for Fourth of July weekend or day of Fourth of July has a lot more legs to its longevity rather than just one day. We're hoping that these people come back and want to see the flavor of our town,” Kirkland added.
Kirkland said one of the reasons for moving the fireworks show to Monument is because Palmer Lake is dry and that could cause a lot of potential problems. There is still a lot of mud in the lake prompting rescues if people were to get stuck in the mud.
“Our basic intention of having the fireworks at all is just to continue on the tradition of having a good celebration on Independence Day,” Kirkland said, adding that it is a Tri-Lakes event.
The approval of the fireworks show is contingent on if there is a fire ban.