Lighting Up the Skies on the Fourth

Robert A. DeLeo, Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, presents a check to Joseph B. Ferrara, chairman of the 11 Foundation: In Memory of Michael Mason, for the Fourth of July Fireworks Fund. Also pictured, from left, are Patrick Lally, aide to Congressman Edward J. Markey, Robert Noonan, board member of the 11 Foundation, Town Manager James McKenna, and Fire Chief Paul Flanagan.

Winthrop’s annual Fourth of July fireworks will highlight the town’s celebration of the nation’s 236th birthday after all.

Speaker of the House Robert A. DeLeo and Town Manager James McKenna joined 11 Foundation In Memory of Michael Mason officials Joseph Ferrara and Robert Noonan, Fire Chief Paul Flanagan, and Patrick Lally of Congressman Edward J. Markey’s Office at a press conference Tuesday morning at Town Hall to announce that the tradition of fireworks lighting up the Winthrop sky will continue this year.

At the last Council meeting, McKenna announced the event would not be held due to organizer Lou Camacho being unable to lead the event due to health reasons. After residents expressed dismay that the event would not be held, both DeLeo and McKenna worked diligently to determine if the funding goals and operational aspects of staging a display could be met in a short time window.

DeLeo not only took on a leadership role in the effort, but he made a substantial donation to the fireworks fund. The Speaker made a statement about the event and organizer Lou Camacho’s past efforts.

“Realizing, unfortunately, the health issues of Lou Camacho, who’s done this [fireworks demonstration] for so many years and whom we owe a debt of gratitude – the Fourth of July is such a wonderful tradition in this community, bringing families together starting with the Horribles Parade and ending with the fireworks at night – I really felt it was important that we step up and try to keep this tradition alive,” said DeLeo.

Congressman Markey also pledged a donation to the fireworks fund. “I am pleased to offer my support for the Winthrop July Fourth Fireworks,” said Markey. “I would like to thank The 11 Foundation, Speaker DeLeo, and Mike Eruzione for helping to ensure that this great tradition continues.”

The 11 Foundation: In Memory of Michael Mason, had a major role from the outset, having entered into an agreement with the town to fund the annual fireworks this year

Flanagan said the 11 Foundation has secured the safety permits for the fireworks demonstration and he’s confident that all safety regulations will be followed.

“The 11 Foundation is filing the necessary permits and they’re bringing in a very credible company, American Thunder, that will be staging 60 fireworks shows in the state on the Fourth,” said Flanagan. “Safety wise, all the permitting goes through the Fire Marshall’s office. As soon as the explosives arrive in town, we will have a fire watch until after the shooting of the fireworks.”

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