Fireworks donations within $900 of goal
High winds hamper completion of show
By Russ Pankonin
The Imperial Republican
Imperial’s firemen planned to launch the biggest fireworks show ever in Imperial.
Organizers budgeted $8,000 towards the show, with a goal of $5,000 raised from donations and a $3,000 contribution from the city.
The extra big show was planned in conjunction with Imperial’s Q-125 celebration. The city doubled their normal contribution and the donation goal was raised to $5,000 this year.
Russ Pankonin, fund drive coordinator, said more than $4,000 has been contributed thus far. He remains hopeful more contributions will come in over the next week or so to meet the $5,000 goal.
Anything over the goal will be forwarded to next year’s fund drive.
Winds cut show a little short
During Saturday night’s fireworks show, Fire Chief Bryan Dannatt was in constant contact with the weather service to keep up on storm conditions.
A large bank of storm clouds missed Imperial to the north before the show but another storm moved in behind it.
Dannatt said the weather service told him to expect high winds with two to five minutes left in the show.
The firemen were in the midst of firing their largest shells of the show—five-inchers—but had to scrap the rest to move into the finale.
The sky lit up with a brilliant crimson red hue as the finale went off without a hitch.
Within five minutes of completing the finale, high winds did indeed strike.
The wind changed during the show, forcing the firemen to stop briefly to redirect the direction of their firing bunkers.
Dannatt said he couldn’t take a chance of endangering firemen, spectators or property as a result of high winds so the five-inch firings were halted to complete the finale.
He said about 40 of the five-inch shells remain, which will make quite a show themselves.
He said they will put the shells in storage and seek permission for another time to shoot them off.
Several suggestions thus far include during the fair or on New Year’s Eve.
Dannatt said they will make that decision at a later time.