Jaffrey fireworks display pays tribute to Motown

By MEGHAN PIERCE
Union Leader Correspondent
August 20. 2017 9:07PM
Atlas PyroVision Productions light up the Jaffrey sky Saturday with a tribute to the music of Motown at the annual Festival of Fireworks. (Meghan Pierce / Union Leader correspondent)

Thousands turned out for the Festival of Fireworks in Jaffrey on Saturday night. (Meghan Pierce/Union Leader Correspondent)

JAFFREY — Plenty of people turned out for the Festival of Fireworks at the Jaffrey airpark Saturday, which this year paid tribute to the music of Motown.

“We’re back to where it originated,” said Bob Shauman, Jaffrey-Rindge Rotary president. “We’re hoping to have a larger turnout this year.”

The Rotary, like many service groups in the area, relies on the event as a major fundraiser.

The Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce runs the event at Silver Ranch Airpark in town, in partnership with the airpark and the Jaffrey-based fireworks company, Atlas PyroVision Productions. Musical accompaniment to the fireworks display this year featured Motown music.

The Festival of Fireworks has been a town tradition since the 1950s, but in 2012 a bomb threat led police to cancel the event just days before the festival.

After the bomb threat, the festival went dark for two years; in 2014 and 2015 the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce ran the event at the Cheshire County Fairgrounds in Swanzey.

Bringing the festival home was a two-year process that included coordinating several departments, primarily police and fire so the Chamber of Commerce could provide the adequate public safety needed for the event.

Moving the festival to Swanzey changed the event and hurt Jaffrey area groups and businesses that relied on the event.

As for the chamber, the festival represents a large part of its fundraising each year as well.

While the turnout was good Saturday the festival is still building itself back up after its hiatus in Jaffrey, organizers said.


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