Annual Orchard Beach fireworks a blast

The pre-fourth of July fireworks extravaganza at Orchard Beach was certainly a blast this year!

The borough’s only fireworks display was once again a smashing success as Senator Jeff Klein and Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. put on a barbecue for 2,000 constituents and a 30 minute fireworks display, as thousands more gathered on the beach and boardwalk on Thursday, June 30.

Organizing the annual event, which was founded by the late Senator Guy J. Velella and continued under Klein and former Borough President Adolfo Carrion Jr., has blossomed into a community gathering.

“This has really become a Bronx tradition because it is the borough’s only fireworks display,” Klein said. “Manhattan has Macy’s, we have Orchard Beach.”

The fireworks were preceded by a presentation of the Colors by the NYPD Law Enforcement Explorers, 45th Precinct, and NYC Transit Pipes and Drums. Steven Santiago, known as “Opera Steve”, performed the U.S. National Anthem.

There was also a moment of silence for fallen soldiers.

Alive-N-Kickin’ provided musical entertainment before the fireworks began at 9 p.m, with BronxNet executive director Michael Max Knobbe as emcee. Those watching the fireworks extravaganza said the fourth of July served as a opportunity for Klein, Diaz, and other officials and businesses involved to show their appreciation to the community.

Sponsors for the event were The Bronx Tax Man John Cerini, Schuyler Hill Funeral Home, Sanitation Salvage, Con Edison, Coors Light, BOEDC, The Bronx Tourism Council, Hudson Valley Bank, Verizon, Snapple, St. Barnabas Hospital, Business Initiative Corporation of New York, WellCare, Coors Light, The Parks Department, NYPD, Cablevision, Assurance Wireless, Manhattan Beer, FDNY, Sabrett, Affinity Health Plan, Pepsi, Pascap, Area Property Services, GAL Elevator Devices, and Crown Memorial. Klein and Diaz presented awards to the sponsors.

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