Saline Sets Up Fireworks Committee to Fundraise and Plan 2023 Display

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Saline City Council approved the formation of a fireworks committee at Monday's meeting.

The committee will be chaired by Councillor Janet Dillon.

Police Chief Marlene Radzik or another police department designee, Fire Chief Jason Sperle or another fire department designee, and Toni Cotter will also serve on the committee.  According to a memo from Mayor Brian Marl to city council, Saline Area Schools and the business community were also to be represented on the committee. Those names were not included in the agenda packet.

The committee will be charged with fundraising, planning and executing the event for sometime in 2023.

Councillor Dean Girbach said he believed the fireworks event should be organized outside city government.

"Given the expense, the time that's going to be involved and liability, I think it should be a separate organization outside of the city," Girbach said.

A city-wide fireworks show returned to the city when developer Grand Sawka pledged to sponsor the show. There were three fireworks shows in the city. In 2018 and 2019, the fireworks were held July 4.

In 2020, the show was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. In 2021, the show was not held in the summer, due to unease around the pandemic. The show was held instead in October.

With no financial backing, the city did not host an Independence Day fireworks show this summer.

Councillor Dillon asked people not to speculate on social media about the status of the fireworks shows. It was unclear what she was talking about.

"The one thing I will ask is if people have questions that they direct them to the committee that they don't take the social media and make speculation about things," Dillon said. "It makes it very hard to plan events. When people are saying that we're not having them, it is it just sends out mixed signals."

Dillon said there was "a lot of chatter" that the city was hosting Independence Day fireworks and there were a lot of "disappointed children "because there was no show."

Dillon then directed people with questions to contact the committee or City Manager Colleen O'Toole.

According to Marl's memo, the committee is encouraged to improve the event by adding amenities like music, food and children's activities.

The appointments to the committee are in effect until Dec. 31., 2023.

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