CANTON, Ohio – Spectacular fireworks, lighting up the skies over the city of Canton. It's a July 4th tradition.
But with just a few weeks away from the annual Monumental Fourth Fireworks at the McKinley Presidential Library and Museum, organizers fear the skies over Canton will be dark for the 4th.
Organizer and Local Union president Robert Harper says, "We pay for the policemen, the firemen, city workers and we pay for the fireworks, portable bathrooms and live musical entertainment, which in all, totals about $30,000.
This year, Harper says they’re about $15,000 dollars short, since a few major donors from last year have not contributed again or have donated less money.
He also says Canton had to cut $5.1 million dollars from its general fund budget. The fireworks show did not make the cut.
“Last year, we had over 10-thousand people, closer to 12-thousand they tell me. No problems at the event. We paid for everything and cleaned it up. The money left over, a few thousand. But the idea is that it means a lot to these kids, we got a lot of kids for the 4th of July,” said Harper.
The event is free to the public. Organizers are now asking for help.
Rudy Burgan is a concerned resident and said, "The city has the money. They just spend it where they want to spend it. They have money. The city should go head and put on the fireworks display and let the families have a good time."
"This is tradition. It's one of the big events Canton always hosted. I hope it happens," said former resident Gina Brown.
If you'd like to see this event held this year, which is actually scheduled for July 3rd, there is still time to donate.
Organizers say you can drop off a check at the American legion post 144 in Canton or at a cobbler shoe repair on Market Avenue.