The City of Rifle Independence Day Celebration featuring Symphony in the Valley and Fireworks! will be at Centennial Park on Monday July 3. The July 3rd event has become a tradition in Rifle. In the past, crowds have been estimated to exceed 2,500 people.
This year’s event includes Mini Putt 2 Go, which will begin operating around 4:00. Jammin’ Jim the Juggler, face painting artists Noemi and Sheabrea, and food from Lucky Dog, will be available from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Come early and enjoy the afternoon visiting Rifle businesses, restaurants and the park prior to the show. Centennial Park is a beautiful venue with a new playground. Also, the Centennial Park spray pad will operate for extended hours, until 8:30, the night of the event.
Symphony in the Valley’s “Noodle Soup” ensemble will begin playing at 7:30 p.m. (which is a change from previous postings of 7:00) and the Symphony will follow with their patriotic repertoire beginning at around 8:30 p.m. After a break, the symphony will accompany the fireworks show. The fireworks show will launch from the traditional Rifle Middle School site at approximately 9:30 p.m. to 9:45 p.m. when it is dark enough to launch. If you are walking into Centennial Park from the north, keep in mind that the trail will be closed near the Middle School during the fireworks launch, so if you’re coming from north of the park, you’ll need to be into the park by 9:15 p.m.
This past winter the City conducted a test launch of fireworks from the Rifle High School soccer field. The site had pluses and minuses. The launch could be seen from many areas around town, but that is only part of the equation. The biggest challenge is that the site was closer to native areas, with more fire fuels, which would require many hours of mitigation work. Being closer to native areas makes fire danger cancellations more probable. Also, at a greater distance from core viewing areas, larger fireworks devices would be more desirable. The personnel licensed for that level of pyrotechnics are in high demand and usually booked for much larger shows. People seem to like the proximity of the fireworks show at Rifle Middle School/Centennial Park. The City first considered moving the show due to concerns about possible damage to the RMS roof. After the test launch, City and Re-2 School District officials discussed the situation.
Re-2 was willing to work with the City on using the RMS site. The City committed to additional precautions, such as having a spotter and additional sprinklers and water access on the RMS roof during the fireworks display.
Bring your folding chairs. Weather conditions have recently caused a spike in nuisance mosquito population and though mosquito control contractors have been working diligently, bring mosquito repellent just to be sure.
The celebration is weather and fire danger dependent and may be canceled if adverse conditions exist. Please stay informed through the City’s website, www.rifleco.org or the Parks and Recreation Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/RifleParksandRecreation.
Updates may also be obtained through Rifle Police Department social media outlets including their Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/RiflePolice/ ,Twitter and Nextdoor.
This year’s event is sponsored by the Visitor Improvement Fund (Lodging Tax) and Rifle Parks and Recreation.