Fourth file photo

Louisiana Press-Journal file photo.

CLARIFICATION: Organizers emphasizd that while some of the programming around the event and the location would be different, the fireworks display itself would go forward as normal.

LOUISIANA – As a result of a crowded riverfront and fundraising difficulties this year’s Fourth of July celebration in Louisiana will be a scaled-back affair.

Kristal Pitzer, the executive director of the Louisiana Chamber of Commerce, which runs the event, asked for understanding of residents.

“I understand that its been a lot bigger in the past and I would really appreciate everybody’s paitience as we work through this,” Pitzer said.

Spectators will be stationed away from the traditional site on the riverfront, currently squeezed between floodwaters and lots full of construction equipment.

Instead, they will gather along Main Street near City Hall.

Lack of space last year prompted some spectators to gather on the train tracks running parallel to the river — an arrangement Pitzer said represented a major safety concern.

Next year, after the Massman and the Missouri Department of Transportation have decamped from their staging site for their work on the new Champ Clark bridge, Pitzer said the Chamber plans to reclaim the traditional location.

The choked-off traffic to Louisiana on practically every side this spring — between closures of the Champ Clark Bridge, Route 79 and repaving on Hwy 54 had a possibly unintuitive impact on planning for the Fourth of July:  reduced collections during the weekend that organizers spent fund-raising from motorists at the four-way stop in Louisiana.

Four or five vendors  will be present at the event, Pitzer said. Fireworks will start at 9 p.m.

Send questions and comments to athorp@pikecountynews.com.

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