Police Chief Joe Treviño said city residents who want fireworks this July 4 will have a chance to see the real thing without spending a dime.
Angel Care Ambulance Service is paying the cost of a first-class fireworks display at the Bee County Exposition Center for the third year in a row, said business owner Gabriel Aleman.
With the help of Bebe Adamez, Aleman is hoping to entice as many local residents as possible to come out and see thousands of dollars worth of aerial fireworks go off high in the sky.
Parking and entrance to the Expo Center grounds will all be free, Adamez said.
This year’s celebration will not feature the daytime activities in the Lucas-McNeill Pavilions.
Turnout for the daytime vendors and events has been slim at best, Adamez said, mainly because of the summertime weather.
“It’s just too hot,” Aleman said.
But as the day begins to cool off at about 6:30 or 7 p.m., Adamez said the gates will open and fireworks fans will be able to park in the large lot north of the rodeo arenas.
That will give those attending a chance to park their pickups and set out their lawn chairs where they can best see the fireworks before the show starts at about 9 p.m.
Aleman said plans are to set off the fireworks closer to the center’s old rodeo arena to give spectators parked on the grounds a better vantage point for viewing the display.
He said restrooms will be open in the new rodeo arena for those attending the fireworks event.
Angel Care is planning to have a refreshment stand to sell soft drinks and simple food, like sausage wraps.
“We’ll have a tent set up or something,” Aleman said. All proceeds will go toward Angel Care’s Relay for Life donation next year.
Once again, the experts from the Beeville Volunteer Fire Department will be in charge of setting off the fireworks.
Adamez said security will be provided at the Expo Center grounds by the Bee County Sheriff’s Office and Beeville Police Department.
“But that doesn’t mean there won’t be any officers patrolling in the city,” Treviño said.
Officers will be out answering calls from neighbors who complain about fireworks going off near them.
The chief said it has been illegal to possess, set off, store or use fireworks inside the city since the City Council passed an ordinance against the fire threat in 1973.
“It’s a Class C misdemeanor,” the chief said. Although the fine is $200, violators also will be required to pay court costs.
“It’s just not worth it,” Treviño said.
Gary Kent is a reporter at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 120, or at reporter@mySouTex.com.