February 28, 2007
We are just about four months away from celebrating Independence Day this year, but a long-standing tradition in Crozet is already causing a buzz because it is being scaled back.
The Fourth of July 2007 celebration is being scaled back because of what its sponsor, the Crozet volunteer fire department, calls a lack of interest, which is also making the three day event become costly.
"Just over the last few years the interest in the local carnival seemed to be dwindling," said Matt Robb of the Crozet Volunteer Fire Department.
Matt Robb with the Crozet Volunteer Fire Department said the usual sights and sounds on the Fourth of July in Crozet needed a change.
"We've changed this year to what we are calling a lawn party, and we are pretty excited about it. It going to feature many of the things you would see at a carnival," added Robb.
Unlike the carnival, the annual fundraiser will not require hundreds of hours of planning, manpower, or the need to last three days. Besides a lack of interest, the lack of money also forced the volunteer fire department to make the event just one day.
"We've been watching it for the last few years, and just been wondering exactly when to pull the trigger, and to decide when it was time to change," added Robb.
The Crozet Volunteer Fire Department spends about 2,000 hours in training, and answers about 1,000 emergency calls a year.
Robb said the firefighters need to spend their time wisely and this new celebration helps their overall goal.
"To make something that Crozet enjoys, and make it financially feasible, and bring in good funds and donations to the fire department," added Robb.
There is a chance for the fireworks to make an appearance in 2007 as the department is talking to someone who may pick up the tab to bring them back.
Robb said this year's changes are not necessarily permanent. The department will have to see how this year turns out, and make more decisions after this year.