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What Did You Think of Montville's 4th of July Fireworks?

Township ends annual Independence Day celebration with a bang.

hosted its annual three-day Independence Day celebration last weekend, finishing off several days of fun, food and festivities with a fireworks presentation Saturday night.

Spectators from the township and beyond crowded the lawn of the field and bleachers to watch as carnival rides continued in the high school parking lot. Earlier Saturday, a parade marched to the field, hot air ballon rides were offered and judges chose this year's Summer Idol.

Check out our photo gallery from the parade on Saturday.

For those of you who watched the fireworks display, we want to know what you thought. 

Participate in our poll below and then leave your comments.

James P. Page July 02, 2012 at 11:00 AM
Thank you to all the Sponsors, Donatations and the many Volunteers that make this event happen! Just a general question: How would people of the community feel if the 4th of July Celebration went the same route as Montville Day?
Larry D'Oench July 02, 2012 at 11:27 AM
Awesome fireworks that started on time and without excessive speechifying. Reading the names of veterans was a nice touch.
CB July 02, 2012 at 12:05 PM
I thought the fireworks show was SPECTACULAR!! Thank you to everyone involved. The sound system was better than it was in past years; but I really did miss the patriotic music that used to go along with it. The pop music selections were nice--but it took away from the meaning of the celebration.
Gary Lewis July 02, 2012 at 12:51 PM
Montville's 4th of July fireworks is an annual must-see....we make it a family-and-friends outing and make an evening of it. Irwin, Tom Mazz and the 4th of July Committee ensure it is a terrific event year in and year out. I heard some disturbing background rumblings, though, that this may be the last year! Not sure if this is what you are also referring to Ice Cream Man, but that would be an absolute shame. If the Committee needs additional help or volunteers, I am sure the community will step up if they just ask. If it is a budget issue or a property use issue, the Township Committee and Board of Education need to hear from the community that cutting this out is simply not acceptable. Gary Lewis
Montville Mom July 02, 2012 at 01:20 PM
My entire family had a BLAST at the 4th of July carnival and festival! The fireworks were amazing, and at least from my viewpoint, the crowd did a much better job of cleaning up after themselves (less litter blowing around). That said, I'd like to suggest some better advertising in future years. The wristband time frames for Saturday were mis-advertised as ending at 4PM, when in fact they went through 5PM. I also didn't even known WHEN the festival was until approx. 2 weeks before when Montville Messenger came out. Many friends had already planned vacations. Maybe a flyer sent home via the schools before summer break?
Annette July 02, 2012 at 01:30 PM
The best 4th of July fireworks display around! Parked in the Baptist Church on Changebridge. Best $10 I ever spent! Great view of the fireworks and easy exit.
Dan Grant July 02, 2012 at 01:45 PM
Fire works were great. I got a kick out of my 5 year old Grandson standing at attention and saluting the Pledge, He was amazed at the fire works and so was I.
Craig Chapman July 02, 2012 at 02:14 PM
Great as always, we usually get one family a year that now join us from out of town and are amazed at the show Montville puts on. I was a bit surprised to see police carrying infrared or night vision cameras around...and was wondering why almost an hour after the fireworks ended was traffic being diverted one way on Changebridge?
James P. Page July 02, 2012 at 02:27 PM
To answer your question specifically yes, it’s EXACTLY that and it is not a matter of volunteers. See, just to dispel assumptions made on the part of many individuals that attend this event. The 4th of July Committee raises ALL funds through Sponsorship dollars, private donations and the donations collected through Parking. The Township provides Police and DPW. The TC recently asked the 4th of July Committee how much was actually spent on Fireworks; an amount was provided which includes the accompanying Sound System too. The TC “suggested” that ½ the amount should be spent on fireworks (which this event is the 2nd largest fireworks display in the state) and to give the remaining balance to the TC to pay for the Police and DPW. In another words the Township no longer wants to pay for this portion, thus placing the burden on the 4th of July Committee to raise the additional funds. Hence, the potential problem to see this go way of Montville Day….
James P. Page July 02, 2012 at 02:44 PM
This is PUBLISHED in the Montville Messenger inculding the Parking discount coupon Months before the event delivered to your Mailbox, and for at least a month before the event signs are placed in establishments all over town. The Montville Messenger and the Township Website has all the information needed to answer any questions. @Montville Mom, how else do you feel this should be communicated?
James P. Page July 02, 2012 at 02:57 PM
Night Vision needed to look for any buring ambers, don't need any fires starting up. It akes a good hour plus to clear the traffic out from all the parking areas, how else would you suggest doing it CC?
pat July 02, 2012 at 04:09 PM
Is it true that this is the last year for the fireworks?? And was there any place Montville Township was NOT charging for parking??
Dan Grant July 02, 2012 at 04:13 PM
So far the Township Committee has shed participation in the Towaco Jazz festival, eliminated Montville Day and from what you are saying wants to cut back of the Fire Works display in order to fund the cost of DPW and Police. I hope that isn't true. The first Fourth of July celibration in Montville that I attended was hosted by the Pine Brook Fire Department and was a simple rural celebration with things like sack races and pie eating contests and the like, The first Township Celebrations featured non-profit groups in the Township each running a booth for foods, ice cream and drinks and a long since eliminated Beer Garden run by the Montville Baseball League, all as fund raisers with the Fourth of July Committee taking a percentage for other expenses including the Fire Works. In spite of changes over the years it is still a worth while event which brings the Township together and the last one we have. This Township Collects over $90 million in taxes. The small amount spent on Community building events is a good thing.
James P. Page July 02, 2012 at 04:27 PM
@PAT What is ASKED of anyone when Parking is a DONATION, NOT MANDITORY, NOT REQUIRED, a simple donation to help support the event. Who do you think pays for this event, or do you feel asking for a DONATION is something too much to ask for?
James P. Page July 02, 2012 at 04:33 PM
1st MONTVILLE 4th of July Event was around 1970 or 1971 on the Exit Driveway for the High School. Simple Tents lined the driveway, basic games like bean bag toss, some food and Mr. Nelligan was the main individual behind it after previous years of doing the Parade in Lee Court using garder tractors with trailers and a neighborhood BBQ. And it's been an Annual Event at the High School ever since.
pat July 02, 2012 at 04:59 PM
You are not allowed to park unless you pay...
EMG July 02, 2012 at 05:15 PM
Does Icecream Man have a smarta&& comment for everyone?
James P. Page July 02, 2012 at 05:26 PM
That's UNTRUE, nobody is FORCED to pay, and if so what parking area was it? And it will be addressed.
James P. Page July 02, 2012 at 05:32 PM
@EMG sorry, but your post is what you state. When answering questions with a direct black and white statement, or asking questions to gain knowledge is not being what you state. It's called being blunt, and getting to the point, no fluff, direct and too the point...
Montville Mom July 02, 2012 at 06:39 PM
The original post has idea #1- Send a flyer (electronic or paper) home via the schools before summer break. Other ideas include adding social media listings and adding "teaser" articles on Patch itself. Rather than your defensive, blunt, get to the point reaction to honest observations and/or suggestions, perhaps you should take a step back a LEARN something about how things could be improved? I did Google searches mid-May through mid-June trying to find information about the festival as I was contemplating purchasing wristbands for guests and wanted to gauge the cost as well as find out what dates/times the wristbands would cover. All I found online was related to 2011. A call to the Rec Dept eventually led me to Irwin's phone number who (graciously) answered my questions. I am quite an engaged Montville citizen who was willing to put in some effort to get information, and I am telling you that information was NOT easy to find despite your rant to the contrary.
Nate July 02, 2012 at 06:59 PM
I thought it was a great event, with one MAJOR exception. On Saturday evening I was walking past the "Dunk the Clown" tank when I heard the clown shout to a adolecent boy who was throwing, "Hey Jew, did you eat too many matzos balls? Is that why you can't hit the target?" I confronted the clown who told me that if I don't like the jokes I should go home. I immediately flagged down the event officials who took me to the trailer to report the incident. They were very professional and courteous. I want to thank them for their immediate response to my issue.
Peter Greendyk July 03, 2012 at 11:25 AM
Just a word to add about the Township providing excellent Police and DPW coverage...The Montville Township Volunteer First Aid Squad also sets up a first aid tent, organizes two extra volunteer crews for each day of the carnival, and stations extra crews throughout the town away from the fire works traffic in case there are medical emergencies. Plus, is it me, or does the parade crowd seems to get sparser?
Scott Gallopo July 03, 2012 at 01:06 PM
Icecream Man - "The TC “suggested” that ½ the amount should be spent on fireworks (which this event is the 2nd largest fireworks display in the state) and to give the remaining balance to the TC to pay for the Police and DPW. " Your comment is completely untrue. Why would you say such a thing? Do you have first hand knowledge, are you embellishing the truth, or are you just spreading a baseless rumor? How was this "suggestion" communicated? I ask because I am not aware of any TC initiative or meddling with respect to the fireworks and Fun Fair funding, and a recommendation from the TC of that nature would need to be discussed during a public TC meeting. No such discussion took place. Gary Lewis mentions "disturbing background rumblings". It is a shame that such a terrific event, which is supported by the community and the TC, can be politicized and cheapened by a handful of rumor mongers (I'm not suggesting you are part of this Gary). Let's put all the fact on the table and find out what is really at issue here. THE SHOW MUST GO ON, AND THE SHOW WILL GO ON. Scott Gallopo Township Committeeman
Cynthia July 03, 2012 at 02:40 PM
Mr. Grant, you always seem to be level headed when it comes to saving the 'community feel' of this town. Thank you!! I can only imagine that in times of dwindling budgets it is difficult for TC and BoE to do what they need to do, but from this one citizen, to all elected officials, to members of the July 4th committee, PLEASE KEEP what makes Montville special. We don't ALL use EVERYTHING all the time, like the Senior Center, the Dog Park, the Ball Fields, Dawson, July 4th Celebration, Montville Day, whatever. But we each do use SOME of the wonderful facilities and events this town offers. And they are nice to have. It is what makes Montville special. It is what the community has to offer. DON'T ALLOW US TO LOSE IT!!!
TrueDisbeliever July 03, 2012 at 03:09 PM
Pat is correct, I was asked to pay $10 and I was not given the option to "donate". This was a fee to park, not a donation.
Dan Grant July 03, 2012 at 03:40 PM
Cynthia, Thank you for "Getting it" not for me but for the Township. At a time when many people, if not most live many different places in their lives, I have only lived in one and for me it is a special place. My Mother grew up here and so did my children. It is made special because we could have hit a crossroads in the late 80s and early 90s and been Pasippany or Wayne and thanks to a lot of people we did not go that way. Many of the things that we built during the 90s, the open space we purchased, the infrastucture improvements all helped but this Townships volunteer base, Fire and First Aid, Civic and Service Groups have a generational aspect to them. Walk the halls of the departments and you will see the many of the same family names repeated going back generations. I believe in events like the 4th of July Celibration and events like Montville day and the Towaco Jazz Festival because I think they bring a community together. I think they help expand our volunteer base and aquaint people with the special qualities Montville Township has to offer. I worry that miniscule savings on taxes by a Committee that doesn't understand that concept can hurt this Township and that hurt can last a long time.
pat July 03, 2012 at 05:49 PM
The car in front of me at the Library did not realize they had to pay...the rest of us had to back up so they could turn around and leave! Perhaps not everyone manning the parking lot understood the concept of "donation only"??
Terpsfan94 July 05, 2012 at 01:11 AM
The fireworks were excellent, as always...but I would have appreciated police presence directing traffic off the grass (behind library) and into the library parking lot....it was very dangerous there as everyone tried to squeeze through the little space in the fence.

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