Fireworks donations make goal

By: 
Alexis Barker

Alexis Barker

NLJ News Editor

 

Thanks to gracious local businesses and community members, the Newcastle Volunteer Fire Department has reached their $10,000 goal for its annual firework show, according to local business owner and organizer Pam Gualtieri. 

“I have to say we, as a community, I wouldn’t have reached the
goal without the businesses and community members,” Gualtieri said about the accomplishment. 

As a member of the Newcastle Area Chamber of Commerce in 2019, Gualtieri first took on raising the funds last year to help out the local fire department. As a community, she said, she was able to collect the
funds in eight days and although she is not a member of the chamber anymore, she took on collecting the funds once again. 

“There was a lot happening with the chamber this year with changes and the executive director, so when Don Munger came in and said something about the fireworks, I jumped in and started,” Gualtieri said. “This year I wanted to start a little different because of COVID; I knew the businesses were affected, so I went to the community first through Facebook.”

That tactic held some success as people stepped up and started donating funds for the show, Gualtieri said, but it just wasn’t enough. 

“That plan wasn’t getting me where I was hoping to be and I was about a quarter of a way to the goal when I decided the worst I could hear was no,” Gualtieri said, noting that she then began calling businesses. 

“They pulled through. I was just amazed. It took longer than eight days but the businesses and community pulled through and combined we have gone over the goal,” Gualtieri said. 

Raising the funds this year was a little more important than before, according to Gualtieri, because the community is in need of something ‘normal’ to take their mind off what is happening around the world. 

“With everything going on right now this is something we can all look forward to. This is something we don’t have to worry about COVID, even if there were strict social distancing standards we could still enjoy the show. This is something that will help take our minds off of what is happening around us — we can forget the troubles of the world for a bit,” Gualtieri said. “This will bring the community together without bringing us together [physically].” 

The pride Gualtieri felt while watching last year’s firework show made this year even more important to her. 

“Last year was the first show I appreciated and had fun watching since I saw a firework show in 1995 in Washington, D.C. The reason: I knew where the funds came from. I had more pride watching them go off knowing where each one came from. It just meant so much more being able to work with the community to raise money to give back to the community,” Gualtieri said. 

The Newcastle Volunteer Fire Department’s annual firework show is scheduled for dusk on July 4. They will be shooting them off at the water tank near the firing range, so they should be visible throughout the city.

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