Opinion: Support sought for Brandon’s annual fireworks show

The Brandon Independence Day Celebration Committee is a small, fluid group of volunteers who organize and raise funds for Brandon’s two-day Independence Day celebration. In its 40-year history, this event has evolved into a major attraction for thousands of tourists, our citizens, neighbors and friends.
The Brandon Parade is considered to be the best small town parade in Vermont. It is held on the first Friday and Saturday of July; in 2016 that will be July 1 and 2, and we expect it to be bigger and better than ever.
Our activities include: Friday night street dance and food vendors in Central Park; Friday and Saturday Silent Auction in Fellowship Hall; Saturday pre-parade activities, including food vendors and music in Central Park, plus family activities behind the Brandon Inn; our famous Brandon Independence Day Parade; live music after the parade in Central Park; the traditional Great Ball Race over the falls at Green Park; and the annual fireworks display at dusk at Park Village.
This requires a great deal of organization, hard work — and funding. The overall cost of the two days is $18,000-$20,000 per year. In addition to paying for entertainment before and after the parade and marching band units in the parade, we also must pay for porta-potties, Dumpsters, prizes and awards, postage, police and firemen.
The biggest single expenditure is the fireworks. We are eternally grateful for the generous support we receive from the community for our fundraising efforts, primarily the Silent Auction, Boot Drop, business and individual donations and the Great Ball Race. However, a key component to our ability to produce this event is the  appropriation of $6,000 that we receive annually from the town. This appropriation covers the fabulous fireworks display that provides the magical ending to the most memorable event of the summer in Brandon.
Please vote “YES” for the BIDCC.
Debbie Boyce, Chairman
Susan Stone, Treasurer
Brandon Independence Day Celebration Committee 

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