Major Independence Day celebrations in the Tucson area have both sparked and fizzled over the years.
Fireworks shows for July 4th were held at the University of Arizona football stadium until 1978. The fireworks show ended in 1978 because of fire and safety concerns.
The Tucson Jaycees then took up the torch and put on July 4th fireworks shows at the Pima County Fairgrounds. This ended in 1981 due to poor ticket sales.
Old Tucson Studios started their July 4th fireworks shows in 1982. This did not work because thousands of spectators trampled desert areas in the Tucson Mountain Park, rather than paying for admission to Old Tucson.
In 1983 there were no major July 4th fireworks shows in Tucson.
In 1984 the City of Tucson started the largest local display by shooting the July 4th fireworks off the top of “A” mountain (aka Sentinel Peak).
On July 4, 2002, all fireworks were banned in the City of Tucson and Pima County because of extreme fire danger. There were no fireworks in Tucson, Marana, Sahuarita or Oro Valley. The City of Tucson held a laser light display for their official July 4th celebration at the Tucson Convention Center.
In 2009 the City of Tucson cancelled the July 4th fireworks because of budget problems. Several businesses and community organizations provided funding, so the July 4, 2009 fireworks show did go on that year.
In recent years, July 4th fireworks displays can be seen at various locations around Tucson and Pima County, including the Kino Sports Complex, opens a new window and Casino del Sol, opens a new window.
"City, county ban all fireworks." Arizona Daily Star. July 1, 2002. Page A7.
"July 4th celebrations." Arizona Daily Star. July 5, 2002 Page 1.
“Tucson cancels July 4th fireworks.” Arizona Daily Star. June 4, 2009. Page 1.
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