Letter: Assistance with fireworks
I would like to take this opportunity to publicly thank a few people who helped make our recent fireworks display at Victory Worship Center possible.
Unbeknownst to almost everyone, there is a state law that requires any public fireworks display to have a licensed shooter as well as a permit. This is not a new law. It was passed at least 10 years ago, but has not been enforced until recently.
“Recently” being only five days before our show. We were not even contacted directly. Instead, we were notified “through the grapevine” by the deputy state fire marshal (who lives in Clinton) on Thursday that we would not be able to have our celebration on the following Tuesday.
We had already purchased a large quantity of fireworks ($2700) just to be told five days ahead of time that we would not be allowed to have the show.
Come to find out, Whitten Center’s annual display had been stopped in the same manner last year. I do not have a problem complying with the law, but I do take issue with the fact that we were given such a short notice by someone who lives here in Clinton. He said he had been
trying for a long time, but was unable to reach our church. (Have you not heard of making a phone call or mailing a letter?) Let me get back to my original purpose for this letter – the many people who worked countless hours to ensure that the show would go on. I contacted
Congressman Jeff Duncan on Sunday and one of his staff members, Allen Klump, called me within an hour and started working on the situation. He contacted
the state fire marshal’s office as well as Representative Mark Willis who worked many hours on Monday to secure a permit and a licensed shooter for the show. (On such short notice, this wound up costing us an additional $1100.)
Without their efforts, there would not have been a July 4th fireworks display for the public in the city of Clinton this year. I would also like to thank Mayor Bob McLean and Clinton fire chief, Scott Shiflet, for their support and
willingness to work with us. Lastly, I have to thank my dad, Charles Fallow, for all of the calls he made to keep things in motion. I was unable to follow up because I was working out of town, so he spent the majority of Thursday, Friday, and Monday contacting many city and state officials.
Without him, there would have been no show.
Most importantly, I want to thank God for His power and favor He showed to us in this situation.
I hope the crowd enjoyed the fireworks display and we will work to ensure that similar displays will continue to occur in the future. God Bless America!