Pickerington moves Independence Day fireworks to July 3 due to safety concerns

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Officials at the City of Pickerington and Violet Township have announced changes to the Independence Day celebration for 2019.

The fireworks display will be on July 3 and once again be launched from Pickerington Central High School.

The parade and community celebrating will be held July 4 at Victory Park during daytime hours.

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According to the news release, the changes to the event were made in the interest of public safety.

“We had to make some changes to provide a higher level of security and make people safe. People will still enjoy the celebration. It’s going to be a great event,” said Mayor Lee Gray.

In 2017, Pickerington police had to address reports of gunfire during the fireworks. They said no gunshots were fired but several fights broke out and juveniles induced panic by yelling and running.

This year, police had to deal with another brawl which they described as a borderline riot.

On Wednesday, the city said they are making the move because surrounding suburbs have moved to that day.

Leaders felt that was bringing a lot of outside people to their celebration and making it too big.

“We were just getting really large on the fourth which makes safety more of an issue 38 because larger crowd, just a little bit harder to keep on top of things,” said Pickerington City Manager Frank Wiseman.

The city still wanted a celebration on the Fourth of July so they’re moving the parade to that morning with an event afterward. Details of the event are still being worked out.