Although the venue for Laurinburg’s annual Independence Day fireworks display is out of commission, Scotland County residents will still be able to view a patriotic pyrotechnics presentation.
Held at Scotland High School’s Pate Stadium since fireworks began in 2003, but due to needed repairs, stadium will not be used this year.
The city’s July 4th fireworks display can instead be viewable from the football practice field behind the old gymnasium on the high school’s campus.
Although the practice field has no formal seating, it is large enough to accommodate greater numbers than are usually found in Pate Stadium’s stands for this event.
“There are usually less than 200 people in the stadium itself; people mostly park along the road and watch it from there,” said City Clerk Jenny Tippett.
Although the display began as a joint county and city venture, this year the city will fund the entire display, in the neighborhood of $11,000.
“It’s good for the citizens to have something in their hometown to enjoy to keep them here, rather than having them travel to other places,” said Mayor Tommy Parker.
Parker added that the fireworks event contributes to life in Laurinburg.
“I think any time you take assets or resources and spend them on one thing, while the economy is tough, you’re going to get criticism for spending it that way rather than on something job related,” Parker said. “But it’s a complex equation - you want your quality of life to be good so that people will want to live here.”
Viewers should bring chairs or blankets to the display, which will begin around 8:45 p.m. Parking will be available in the student parking lots to the left and right of the school, from where signs will direct viewers to the practice field.