Fireworks celebration tentatively planned for August’s Heritage Days instead.Based on the state’s recently announced restrictions on the number of people who can gather outdoors and after discussions with the National Park Service – which hosts Salem’s annual July 4th celebration at Derby Wharf – the City of Salem has announced that the traditional July 4th celebration of fireworks and a large concert will not take place this summer. On July 4th the state’s limitations on outdoor gathering sizes will be 250 individuals, far below the many thousands who normally attend Salem’s Independence Day celebration. Instead, this year a special celebratory fireworks display is tentatively planned for Heritage Days in August.“We continue to do all that we can to keep our community safe for everyone,” said Mayor Kim Driscoll. “Unfortunately, even with the improving public health metrics, we will not be in a place where the City or the National Park Service believes we will be able to safely gather on Derby Wharf in July. It’s far too important that we continue to slow the spread of COVID. We are looking forward to welcoming everyone back to our historic waterfront to celebrate on July 4, 2022.”The City invites residents to celebrate America’s independence on July 4th this year by hanging an American flag from their porch or house, decorating their home or business, and sharing images of their personal celebration of the day by posting to social media with the hashtag #SalemCelebratesJuly4th.As a reminder, the use of fireworks is illegal in Salem and, around July 4th, fines are increased for illegal fireworks. Avoid the risk of serious injury to yourself or your loved ones, and the risk of significant fines. Do not detonate fireworks in Salem.

JUSTIN WHITTIER