People pack the Park at the River Walk firework show

Local News

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — This year’s Fourth of July has been a hot one as residents rejoice for the first major holiday since the reopening of the state.

The Park at the River Walk resumed its Fourth of July fireworks show after taking a break last year because of the pandemic.

Bakersfield residents filled up the best seats across the park. Some arrived as early as 3 p.m. Officials predicted about 5,000 people would show up. That’s three times less than 2019’s numbers.

“My mom just told me that there is a beautiful river and they were going to throw fireworks and yeah here I come and I enjoy it, it’s peaceful,” Manuel Guzman a spectator at the firework show, said. “You can see all the ducks right here and the little kids. I like it man.”

Jordon Brown is the pyrotechnic operator for Zambelli Fireworks, which was responsible for the fireworks in the show. Brown and most of his team are local Bakersfield residents. He said he likes to do this work not for the money but instead to put on something special that will be remembered by the community.

Brown said the number one difference between a home-brewed illegal fireworks show and theirs is safety.

“This is done in a professional manner it’s a lot safer,” he said. “This is my 27th year doing fireworks. You know everyone is safe, I go home with all ten fingers and ten toes for sure every time.”

Brown also said people shouldn’t waste their money on illegal fireworks and said they should instead take their family out for a nice dinner and see the free show.

“Keep your illegals at home. Don’t do them,” he said. “Your friends (and) family will all appreciate it when your house isn’t burnt down for doing something you weren’t supposed to be doing in the first place.”

The fireworks in the River Walk show were between 300 and 500 feet long and reached up to 500 feet in the air.

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