Rehoboth Beach Main Street will celebrate America’s independence with its 17th annual fireworks show, set for 9:15 p.m., Thursday, July 4, near Star of the Sea, 307 S. Boardwalk.
Zambelli Fireworks of New Castle, Pa. will once again put on the show. The fireworks typically draw between 70,000 to 100,000 people to Rehoboth.
McGuiness said the weather could play a role in when the fireworks go off; if the forecast calls for rain, fireworks could be shot early. Weather will also make a difference in the size of the crowd; in 2011, a passing storm limited the crowd to about 80,000. However, the next year, with clear skies, nearly 100,000 attended the festivities. The show brings in locals and visitors from as far away as Ohio.
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For entertainment, The Funsters will perform before and after the fireworks at the Bandstand. McGuiness encouraged people to arrive early.
Shuttle buses into town will pickup passengers at Route 1 near County Bank and at the DART Park and Ride. Parking for the buses will available at the grass lot next to County Bank. Main Street Fireworks Committee Chairwoman Kathy McGuiness said the charge to park is $10 per car, with the proceeds split between the Kiwanis club and Main Street.
The Jolly Trolley will run a shortened route from 6 to 11:30 p.m. between Dewey Beach to Christian Street in Rehoboth behind Jack Lingo Realtor. The trolley will pick up and drop off passengers at all of its regular stops between Ruddertowne and Robinson Street in Dewey, but will only stop at Christian Street in Rehoboth due to Rehoboth Avenue being closed until 11:30 p.m., co-owner Christine Hastings said. Once Rehoboth Avenue is reopened, Hastings said regular service will be restored until 2 a.m.
Main Street is still raising funds for the $50,000 show, paid for by donations from local residents and businesses.
“We’re on target,” McGuiness said of the fundraising effort. “Hopefully it will be great.”
Up the canal in Lewes, there is a day’s worth of activities before the fireworks in Rehoboth.
The day starts at 9 a.m. with children’s games and activities on Second Street until 4 p.m. Lewes Chamber of Commerce executive director Betsy Reamer said Second Street will be closed while the games are in progress and will re-open at the conclusion of the games.
The Lewes Boat Parade on the canal starts at 1 p.m., presented by the Lewes Chamber of Commerce and the Overfalls Foundation, followed by an awards ceremony at the Overfalls. Reamer said parade entrants would leave from Roosevelt Inlet across from the Coast Guard Station at 1:30 pm and reach the judges’ reviewing stand at Fisherman’s Wharf at about 2 p.m.
All pre-registered boat entrants are eligible for prizes, include a hand-carved figurine by local carver Bert Long for the most creatively decorated boat. All entrants will receive prizes from the Overfalls Foundation.
Reamer said late, unregistered entries are invited to join the parade by arriving at Roosevelt Inlet at 1:30 p.m., tuning a VHF radio to channel 65 and following instructions.
Wrapping up the day from 5-7 p.m. is the infamous Lewes Doo-Dah Parade. Visitors are encouraged to bring a fun spirit and participate in the parade. The route will start at Manila Avenue, travel down Kings Highway to Savannah Road and finally head to Second, Market and Third streets.