'We have a right to celebrate America's birthday': Caruthers holds fireworks show despite COVID-19

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The fireworks were set up and car after car pulled into the Caruthers fairgrounds. The pandemic didn't stop thousands from coming to one of the only firework shows happening in Fresno County.

Michael Crawley of Clovis says he didn't want his daughter to miss the celebration, since the firework show near their home was canceled.

"I was surprised. I saw there were fireworks. My daughter's six and I know that's a big deal for her," Crawley says.

Despite dozens of firework shows across the Valley fizzling out because of coronavirus concerns, the show went on in Caruthers, but not without some changes.

Groups were asked to be farther apart while the fireworks themselves were shot farther up into the sky.

Organizers say the decision to go on with the event wasn't easy, but it was necessary.

"We feel strongly as a board that there's a lot of restrictions on us and we're not all dealing it well. We have a right to celebrate America's birthday and we're going to do so," said Gary Wenter, Caruthers District Fair president.

Many didn't mind the restrictions.

Some wore masks, and others found creative ways to safely enjoy the holiday from their cars, bringing chairs and ice chests so they could stay away from the crowds and watch the show.

It's a fourth of July holiday unlike any other, but as the familiar sights and sounds of the Independence day holiday filled the night sky, families enjoyed the celebration of freedom despite a time of restrictions.
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