It should come as no surprise that two more annual events have been cancelled for 2020. The latest to be added to the list: the Fireworks & Music Festival at East Lincoln High School and the Tucker's Grove Camp Meeting.
Ronnie Caldwell, who has spent hundreds of hours working to line up the entertainment, get all the proper permisssions, secure the advertisers to fund the project, and coordinate the event with the County, the schools, the Sheriff's Office, the Recreation Dept. and others, said it was just not possible with the pandemic getting worse instead of better. "Governor Cooper's current executive order goes through the 17th, but there's no reason to believe that things are going to be much better on the 25th."
The concert and fireworks were originally scheduled for last Saturday (June 27th) but had been delayed because of the pandemic--in hopes that things might improve. Instead, the number of cases of the virus has grown and continues to grow.
Caldwell had even worked on trying to have the concert on television and still do the fireworks, but that effort didn't work out. "We've already signed Craig Campbell for next year and we're hopeful to have the other entertainers who had been booked for this year when we have the 2021 Denver Area Business Association Spectacular June 26th, 2021." Caldwell said sponsors have already told him they'll continue to support the event. "Climatech Heating & Cooling, Lake Norman Realty, Sweet Dreams Mattress & Furniture, Lake Electric Company, Dry Otter Waterproofing and of course, Lincoln County, were going to be our stage sponsors, and we appreciate their willingness to help bring this wonderful event to our area. After many discussions with the Health Dept., the Sheriff's Office, the County Manager, Parks & Recreation and others, we finally made the difficult decision to put it off until next Summer."
Lewis McLean said the decision to cancel Tucker's Grove was purely a matter of doing what is best for public health. "We just couldn't risk exposing those who would attend and their families to the coronavirus. A lot of our folks are elderly and have been attending Tucker's for most of their lives; we certainly didn't want coming to Tucker's possibly making them sick or worse."
Rock Springs Camp Meeting is still planning to be held this year, but the children's events won't be a part of it this time around and there'll be some other changes. There's still the possibility that the event could still be cancelled if the pandemic continues to get worse, but so far, they're still hoping to have an abbreviated version.
The Lincoln County Apple Festival has more time before any decision would have to be made; it's now scheduled for October, and so far, it's still on the calendar.
By now, most know that Fourth of July events won't be the same this year in most locations. Lincolnton won't have an Independence Day Parade. The parade in Crouse has also been called off. The Westport community will have its parade at 10 AM Saturday, but this year, no walkers, golf carts or four-wheelers, bikes or trikes-only cars & trucks and those will be limited to 35. There will be a Patriotic House Decorating Contest for Westport residents and the top three winners will receive $50 cash prizes.
The fireworks show at Lincolnton High School Stadium will have to be watched from other locations; the stadium won't be open for spectators; the area around the stadium will be CLOSED TO ALL TRAFFIC. There won't be any viewing areas at the stadium and the high school parking lot will be blocked off as will Jeb Seagle Road and Skip Lawing Road. It isn't quite the same watching it on tv (or the internet) but the fireworks show will be live-streamed by Lincolnton Live! and on the City of Lincolnton Facebook page. It begins at 9 PM.
Kings Mountain will have a fireworks show at 9:45 PM Saturday that will be viewable from a wide area including most of the downtown area. They will not have live music or other activities.
Gastonia will have fireworks at 9:30 PM. Long Avenue between MLK Jr. Way and Broad Street will be closed from 4-9:45. There won't be any food trucks or entertainment at the Rotary Pavilion like there is most years.
Maiden won't have a July 4th parade this year. Cherryville has called off any and all July 4th activities. The July 4th concert, cruise-in and fireworks in Dallas were cancelled.
Most area cities and towns will observe Friday (July 3rd) as a holiday. City offices will be closed in Lincolnton and most other municipalities. Bessemer City is observing Monday as an office holiday.
Lincoln County Government offices will be closed Friday. The Lincoln County Landfill and convenience Sites will operate on a regular schedule all weekend.
The Gaston County landfill and convenience sites will be closed Saturday.
The First Friday Recycyling Pickup in Lincolnton will happen as usual this Friday.
Catawba County offices will be closed Friday. Catawba County libraries will be closed Friday and Saturday.The Blackburn Landfill and all five Catawba County solid waste/recycling convenience centers will be closed Saturday. The Catawba County Animal Shelter is currently closed and will be closed through Monday July 6th; it will reopen to the public at 11:00 AM Tuesday, July 7th. Catawba County Parks (Bakers Mountain, Riverbend and St. Stephens) will be open from 9:00 AM – 8:00 PM throughout the holiday weekend.
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