MEEKER I People might think they have to head to the big city for a decent fireworks display, but Meeker residents and past Range Call attendees know better. Thanks to a dedicated team of volunteers and community support, Meeker’s annual Fourth of July fireworks display gets better every year.
The fireworks show in Meeker began almost 30 years ago with “a few guys” — Bren Sullivan, Roger Clare and Jim Riegel and others.
Unlike many towns, Meeker’s fireworks show is entirely dependent on public and private donations.
The fireworks are ignited from the top of the hill near Highland Cemetery. A team of 11 people, plus four fire department trucks and an ambulance, take time away from their own families on the Fourth of July to create a display that’s easily comparable to any of the larger communities in the region.
The 11-person team includes three “can tenders,” six loaders and two shooters. The loaders load the shells. The can tenders keep the lids on the trash cans in case there is a low break or a fire. The shooters have their own bank of shells.
The loaded fireworks can’t be left unattended, so two crew members wait for dusk to fall.
After the 35- to 40-minute show, the team stays around for an hour or so to check for stray sparks.
The following day, the 4-H Sheep Club cleans up the area.
Donations to help enhance the show can be sent to the Meeker Fire Department.
The proximity of the fireworks to town makes for great viewing from almost anywhere, but Meeker Town Park and Circle Park are perennial favorites. From those vantage points, the fireworks seem to be directly overhead.
A collective round of “oohs” and “aahs” from the crowd accompanies the display in a fitting close to the celebration of our nation’s independence.
This year’s fireworks display will begin at dark on Friday.