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Continued: Groups ramp up fundraising to pay for July 4th fun

  • Article by: KELLY SMITH , Star Tribune
  • Last update: June 25, 2014 - 9:29 PM

Keeping tradition alive

In Richfield, Best Buy covers the $15,000 fireworks display. The rest of the $90,000 five-day celebration is funded through businesses, commemorative button sales, a silent auction, even beer sales.

“This year, we’re hoping for good weather — and really thirsty patrons,” said Katie Robison, who heads the volunteer organizing committee.

In Minneapolis, organizers of Powderhorn Park’s event cut their budget almost in half this year by nixing fireworks, opting instead for a daytime celebration. It also helped them address safety concerns after last year’s event was marred by fights and spectators breaking through safety fences during the fireworks. The Minneapolis park police said it couldn’t adequately patrol the Powderhorn event as well as the much larger downtown riverfront show.

On Lake Minnetonka, five cities donate small amounts to help cover the holiday celebration costs, including $24,000 for fireworks. But the event, run by the Excelsior-Lake Minnetonka Chamber of Commerce, depends mostly on the community. The local Rotary Club raised $12,000 from a burger and bingo event. T-shirt sales and fees from a 5K and 10K run also help.

But the rest is up to volunteers like McGlasson, fundraising on foot around the lake to keep a 135-year-old cherished tradition alive.

“Some people don’t think about how it’s funded,” she said. “Somehow it’s overlooked that this costs money and it costs a lot.”


Kelly Smith • 612-673-4141

Twitter: @kellystrib


  • related content

  • Martie McGlasson goes door-to-door to raise money for Lake Minnetonka’s July 4th celebration.

  • When McGlasson can’t speak directly to residents, she will leave a flag with donation information on a tag.

  • Most cities are fundraising for their July 4th festivities.

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