Future of Lititz’s 170-year-old fireworks show in question

LITITZ, Pa. -- Fireworks celebrating America's independence will continue in Lititz Springs Park past the upcoming July 4 holiday, just like it has every year since 1846.

Where it's held after 2018, and what it will look like, remains in question.

According to Lancaster Newspapers, the Lititz Springs Park Board of Trustees announced on June 1 the show would be forced to stop because of an upcoming development project at the former Wilbur Chocolate warehouse building. The building site is currently used as a launching point for the July 4th Celebration fireworks display.

Soon, the vacant warehouse will get a modern makeover, redeveloped with shops, condominiums, and a boutique hotel.

Construction was to begin after the 2017 show. However, thanks to a push July 4th Celebration Chairman Tim Reedy, he says Lancaster-based developer Oak Tree has agreed to halt building plans until after the 2018 show.

Reedy, in a recent 'Letter to the Editor' in the Lititz Record Express newspaper, said state and local codes prevent their large-scale fireworks from getting launched within 560 feet of the soon-to-be occupied building.

Reedy, along with other local leaders, including Jeff Rinehimer, Lititz Springs Park President, and Ron Oettel, Lititz Fire Chief, are in early discussions on where the fireworks show can continue. Suggestions include using Warwick School District fields or downsizing the fireworks display to only ground-based fireworks.

"I can't say whats going to happen after 2018," said Lititz Mayor Tim Snyder.  "All options should be explored. We'll wait until that time to see where everyone is with the park."