Deserving pyro sought

City looking for honorary starter for annual fireworks show

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— A resident who exemplifies pride in hometown and country will be able to add more than a little spark to Fourth of July celebrations this year.

The city of Steamboat Springs and its fireworks committee are seeking nominations for a person, family or small organization to start the fireworks display at Howelsen Hill.

The winner will do the countdown before the fireworks begin and press a button that starts them. The person selected will have the chance to stand on the Howelsen Hill stage on Fourth of July night and give the count down to the start of the show, which will be broadcast live on KBCR radio.

This is the first year for the contest, but Deputy City Manager Wendy DuBord said city officials hope to make it an annual tradition. By selecting someone to set off the fireworks, the city hopes to add one more attraction to the celebration, she said.

"We are just trying to make it a little bit better," DuBord said. "It has become a huge show and a lot of people who come to Steamboat choose to come to Steamboat because we have such a great show."

DuBord said the city's fireworks display is growing in popularity. For the past few years, the city has contributed $10,000 to the show and the private sector has donated another $20,000 to $30,000.

The city already has some nominations for the contest, DuBord said. Nominations should include a short essay on who the person, family or organization is and why they deserve to start the fireworks.

The fireworks committee and city staff will select the winner.

"We were just thinking how can we (make it) a little more personal to Steamboat," DuBord said of the fireworks show. "It will probably be more important to locals than visitors."

-- To reach Christine Metz call 871-4229 or e-mail cmetz@steamboatpilot.com

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