By Charles Prince
BUCKEYE LAKE – Just about everybody now knows that our traditional community-funded BLASST fireworks show returns at 10 p.m. on Wednesday, July 3.
Unfortunately, not as many people remember what community-funded means. As of Friday afternoon, only about 70 individuals and businesses have sent a donation to BLASST’s Buckeye Lake post office box (1524). About two dozen have donated via Paypal on BLASST’s Facebook page. BLASST typically received 400 to 500 donations a year before the dam reconstruction project shut it down for three years. Right now, BLASST has heard from about 20 percent of its donors.
Community-funded means that our lake community funds the show – that means you. While John W. Wolfe’s bequest via the Robert F. Wolfe & Edgar T. Wolfe Foundation at the Columbus Foundation funds about 20 percent of the annual expenses, our lake community must come up with the rest. Please send your tax-deductible contribution, with checks payable to BLASST, to:
PO Box 1524
Buckeye Lake OH 43008
BLASST’s partnership with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and local fire and police departments is also unique. ODNR brings in their law enforcement officers from all over central Ohio and beyond. This year officers are coming from as far away as Hocking Hills, Mohican and Salt Fork state parks. Most of the local firefighters, medics and police officers protecting you are volunteering for the duty.
This group of first responders has meet three times this year in order to make BLASST a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone. Here are the basic rules for BLASST:
- No alcohol, fireworks or flares are permitted on state park property. State property includes the full width of the new sidewalk on the rebuilt dam.
- Anyone may reserve a space on state park property, including the new dam, using a blanket, tarp etc. starting on Wednesday, July 3, provided it is removed after the fireworks show.
- The new 10-foot wide asphalt roadway on the new dam must be kept OPEN and free of spectators for emergency vehicles.
- Parking is strictly prohibited in front of the bright yellow gates that provide vehicle access to the dam. Violators will likely be towed.
- All boating regulations, including after dusk operation, will enforced.
- An emergency channel, marked by buoys, will be maintained from the Fairfield Beach launch areas to the North Shore Park boat ramps. Boaters may cross the emergency channel, but not travel in it or anchor there.
- A fallout zone, marked by buoys, will be strictly enforced around the Fairfield Beach launch areas. No boats, except emergency vessels, are permitted in this area.
- If you have an emergency, please call 9-1-1 immediately. All local fire stations will have on-station personnel available.
- Please don’t litter and use one of the temporary trash containers donated by the Kroger Company.
- Please be courteous as you head to your dock, the launch ramps or home. Traffic on the lake and land will be heavy!
- Enjoy the show and honor America, particularly those who have sacrificed so much for our freedom!
BLASST will be simulcast on KOOL 101.7 FM. Thunderstorms are currently forecasted for Tuesday through Sunday next week. Lightning in the area can force a delay or postponement of the fireworks show. Please listen to KOOL 101.7 FM for any updates or emergency messages.