City halts firework show; festivities and parade still on for Fourth of July

Fireworks have been cancelled for the Fourth of July in Williams.

Fireworks have been cancelled for the Fourth of July in Williams.

Williams’ Fourth of July festivities will continue with the community’s tradition of family-oriented, patriotic fun for the nation’s birthday, however, this year will be without the fireworks that people enjoyed last year after a 10-year hiatus.

The Williams Fire Department, after meeting with forest fuel specialists from Kaibab National Forest, determined the fire danger is too high to consider launching fireworks this year.

“We had a great year last year, but we have closures all around us,” said John Moede, assistant fire chief with the Williams Fire Department. “We would rather have an abundance of caution. We just don’t know how the conditions are going to be.”

Moede said the fire department had been preparing for the event for the past four months and had already submitted permit requests and paperwork with the Arizona Department of Transportation and the FAA.

“It takes a lot of work,” he said. “But I agree 100 percent with the decision.”

The city will continue to have many festivities on the Fourth, however, beginning with a free swim at the Williams Aquatic Center from 12-4 p.m., followed by an old-time ice cream social at the Community Methodist Church at 2 p.m.

A Veteran’s Day banquet is open to the public from 2-5 p.m. at the city stage and parking lot, and antique tractors will be on display on Second Street and Route 66.

One of the best small town parades in northern Arizona begins at 6 p.m. on Route 66. The parade will be made up of floats, tractors, horses, walking entries and tons of red, white and blue as residents — plus visitors — line the street to celebrate America’s independence.

Before the parade, those looking to experience a vintage steam train ride over the holiday weekend can take advantage of the Grand Canyon Railway’s Steam to the Canyon and visit the animals at Bearizona.

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