Independence Day celebrations will have a major element missing in Fairfax, Virginia, this year: Fireworks.
The City has announced that it will not be able to schedule any sky illuminations due to an ongoing construction at the annual celebrations’ usual site.
Following a practice of nearly half a century, Fairfaxers consider viewing the fireworks from George Mason High School‘s (GMHS) athletic fields a fine tradition. That was why thousands return to enjoy them each year.
It is without a doubt, therefore, that there will be some disappointment among the residents. To mitigate it, local authorities are now working on organizing a consolatory celebration, possibly with live music and other entertainment.
“This doesn’t mean we are not celebrating the Fourth of July! We will still offer a unique, family-friendly event in the City. Our creative team is finalizing the details. We are excited to celebrate in a different, but still patriotic, way this year,” said Danny Schlitt, director of the City’s Department of Parks and Recreation.
No, Not The Virus!
When the news first emerged, many couldn’t help but thought of the spread of coronavirus infections as the possible cause.
While the situation on that front remains worrying with new cases reported in several locations across the U.S. including the Commonwealth, authorities are preaching a cautious yet an optimistic and calm approach. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises practicing good hygiene and avoiding close contact with people who are sick.
In Fairfax, the City has reported a second presumptive test result for the respiratory illness on a resident. At a news conference on March 8th, they identified that resident as the spouse of the first patient in the area. They underlined that the exposure was not the result of community transmission.
The reason for fireworks’ cancellation was actually a technical matter and not any heightened fears over a disease contagion. The news served many a sigh of relief as well.
GMHS Project Advancing
Construction on the $108 million GMHS began last summer and will be completed by Fall 2021. The new campus will cover a 290,000-square-foot area and have a capacity to teach 1,200 students a year.
“The purpose of the new building is to promote collaborative learning and to foster independent learners, innovators and problem solvers,” says the project’s lead developer Gilbane Building Company.
The old GMHS campus had served the Falls Church community for nearly seven decades.