Clark County fireworks show back this year with new name, location

Buck Creek Boom is set to blast off July 3.

The annual Clark County fireworks display returns with a new look and location following a year off due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Fireworks enthusiasts can once again celebrate Independence Day on July 3, but this time with fireworks viewable from different locations throughout downtown Springfield and from the surrounding area instead of from the single location at the Clark County Fairgrounds.

The former Old Fashioned Fireworks, now called the Buck Creek Boom, is still organized by the National Trail Parks and Recreation District. The parks district knew if the fireworks were to happen this year they would require a design accommodating to COVID-19 restrictions, Recreation Specialist Penny Dunbar said.

The fireworks will take place along Ferncliff at the Banks of Buck Creek in Springfield beginning at approximately 10 p.m. Saturday.

“The location has changed this year. We thought that would be a good opportunity to update the name since it’s at a different location and it will be along the bank of Buck Creek,” Dunbar said. “That is where the name came from.”

According to the NTRPRD website, those wishing to view the fireworks should, “go to a high point with a clear view of the sky facing towards’' the fireworks launch area.

The rain date is scheduled for July 6.

Buck Creek Boom emerged following scheduling conflicts and a need for social distancing, Dunbar said. Although Ohio Gov. Mike Dewine has since lifted many COVID-19 restrictions, guidelines for large crowds had not been updated when the event was being planned.

“At the fairgrounds, a large number of people would gather in one area. With the change in location, people will not have to gather in one location, the fireworks can be viewed from many different locations within the city,” Dunbar said. “We still wanted to make the fireworks possible for the community, but we knew that we would not be able to hold them like we normally do at the Fairgrounds.”

NTPRD faced a scheduling conflict with an annual horse show at the fairgrounds that falls on the Independence Day weekend.

“Horses and fireworks just don’t go together,” said Dean Blair, executive director of the Clark County Fairgrounds. “In the past, the National Trail Parks was forced to either do the fireworks too early or too late.”

Blair said he’ll miss having the event at the fairgrounds.

“Although we will miss the fireworks, we totally understand,” Blair said. “We support our friends over at the National Trail Parks for moving that event.”

Dunbar says it is still unknown whether the change of location will be permanent.

“The decision will be made after. If they go well I would think we would continue to have the Buck Creek Boom,” Dunbar said.

The 26th annual fireworks show, presented by LWS Taxes, Payroll, and Accounting, is completely funded by area businesses and donors, according to NTPRD officials.

“The fireworks definitely would not be possible without these generous sponsors,” Dunbar said. “We’ve been pleasantly surprised and people have been very generous. From what I have been hearing, a lot of the community is just so happy that the fireworks will happen.”

The fireworks event costs about $25,000, according to National Trail Parks and Recreation District Director Leann Castillo.

In previous years, Castillo said the event would bring around 8,000 to 10,000 people in and around the fairgrounds. This year there will be no designated gathering space, food vendors or live music as previously seen at the fairgrounds.

However, according to Dunbar, the Summer Arts Festival may be a suitable place to watch fireworks and enjoy other activities.

The Summer Arts Festival, also managed by the National Trail Parks and Recreation District, will take place at Veterans Park in downtown Springfield July 1-24. There will be 18 nights of admission-free concerts, theatre and live entertainment. A full schedule can be viewed on the Springfield Art Council’s website.

How to go

What: Buck Creek Boom

Where: Visible from throughout Springfield area

When: Approximately 10 p.m. Saturday, July 3

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