Committee cancels Paso Robles Fourth of July fireworks

May 14, 2013

fireworksOrganizers of the primary Fourth of July fireworks show in Paso Robles have cancelled this year’s event due to lack of funding. [Tribune]

Paso Blast, which takes place at Barney Schwartz Park, draws about 15,000 people annually, according to its organizers.

The Fourth of July Fireworks Committee, a nonprofit subsidiary of the Paso Robles Rotary Club, runs the yearly event and is responsible for the fundraising. Paso Robles Mayor Duane Picanco is a member of the five-person committee.

Picanco told the Tribune that the committee needed $65,000 to operate the show, but to date it had only raised $46,000 in pledges.

“That was the problem,” Picanco said. We didn’t have the money. They were pledges. We had about half of that.”

But, the fireworks committee has previously succeeded in last minute fundraising efforts. Donors saved the show in 2009 and 2011 when it appeared the committee would have to cancel the event. In 2010, though, the fireworks committee did cancel the show.

The city of Paso Robles provided funding for the yearly fireworks show until 2009. Since the loss of city funding, the fireworks committee has struggled to raise the needed amount to put on the show.

Picanco said he did not participate in the decision to cancel this year’s show because he had an appointment at the time of the fireworks committee meeting.

The committee says it plans to revive Paso Blast in 2014. Money already donated for the 2013 show will either return to donors or roll over toward the 2014 show.


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QUOTING THE ARTICLE: (Mayor) “Picanco said he did not participate in the decision to cancel this year’s show because he had an appointment at the time of the fireworks committee meeting.”

Pwok, pwok, pwok, pwok.

This is a regular city event, one that is enjoyed by both wine snobs and families, and Picano couldn’t do a “work around” on his schedule?

Are you implying that wine snobs do not have families? ;-)

Big mistake…just ask the folks in Morro Bay.

Does the City of Paso contribute $$ to the Wine Festival? If so, why can’t they also donate some to the fireworks display? Seems like this town is catering more and more to tourists and doesn’t care about its locals anymore.

Maybe there’s more people who do not like the founding of this country and it’s simple numbers? Wouldn’t surprise me, what with the failure of our education and immigration system over the last 20+ years. When was the last time a child was taught anything significant about any of our founding fathers, what they went through to win our independence, etc.?

My kids are through middle school, and anything they know about our history (apart from minority-focused history, which I also supplement and encourage) is non-existent. How long can we, as a nation, expect people to grasp what those brave men and women went through to form a union if we neglect to teach it? One of the many fallouts from this would be the “meh, so what’s the big deal with July 4th – I can eat hot dogs anytime” attitude.

For our 4th of July, I usually go over a story from one of our founder’s diaries, or a retelling of a great battle, etc. One of my favorites is always debating with my kids who we think was the “first casualty” of the Revolution: Christopher Seider or Crispus Attucks (I tend to favor Cirspus, as it was more of a quasi-military/militia affair, where Christopher was a mob gathering gone horribly wrong).

Anyway, I would encourage anyone and everyone to read about the founding on July 4th, in addition to the hot dogs, fireworks (or lack of), and the usual accouterments.

If this were somewhere in a rain soaked midwest or eastern city, or on a pier over the ocean I would have no problems.

But, here in the dryest and hottest section of the central coast with dry tinder everywhere, even when it is cut, I say no thank you…

Ask the city of Paso how much they charged for police and fire overtime for this event and it will be clear why it was canceled

I wonder if it is as much as Paso charges for similar services for the wine festival?

Very sad as a community we can not the support the celebration of the founding of this Country. Maybe it is just the times, as everyday I see of the u.s. of America that I love and protect.

SLOBIRD, there are other, less expensive ways for Paso to support the “celebration of the founding of this Country.” I’m not saying Paso should or should not kick in for the event…just that a fireworks display is not the only way that the founding of our country can be celebrated.

My only concern is Paso’s priorities when it comes to which type of events it will financially support and which it won’t.

It seems that the City pocketbook is wide open for anything that even has a whiff of being related to the local wine industry, including shutting down one of Paso’s public parks for a paid-admission wine event, for which police service is provided.

Wine festivals may attract tourists, but a fireworks display also attracts tourists. In addition, a 4th of July fireworks event is certainly more family oriented that is a wine festival.

Mary… Sometimes Your too verbal, too many words, or comment lines…. but most of the time Your close to right on….. this time You corked the wine bottle !!!~! Right on Mary and thanks for being very honest…. every weekend another charity wine event,,, rotten streets and bad city water in Paso. Will there ever be and end to this miss managed City ?