Don't mess with Livingston's fireworks.
That's not the mission statement Fourth of July Committee Chairman Julio Valadez is sending with the organization's new website aimed at restarting the city's popular tradition -- but that's what it boils down to.
The website was started about two weeks ago and is still being worked on, said Valadez, who unveiled the website during Tuesday's City Council meeting.
Upcoming features to jump-start what used to be the biggest fireworks display in the Central Valley might include a "donate button" that would provide people an easier method of helping out, he said.
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But a lot's been done already.
The site includes ways to get involved and stay informed about the fireworks situation, including times and locations of meetings, which will be updated, Valadez said.
The Fourth of July committee hasn't spent any money on the website yet, he said. It was created by a developer in Merced. If the committee votes to retain him, it would pay a monthly fee.
Some have insinuated that the cancellation of this year's fireworks was political, but Valadez doesn't take a stance on the issue. "I don't have an opinion on whether it's political," he said. "Let's just get it going again."
Valadez thinks Livingston's Fourth of July celebration is an important event to bring families together and remember heroes who have given their lives in the line of duty, he said.
While Atwater is just down the road for those wanting a fireworks show to go along with their festivities, not everyone is able to make the trip, Valadez said.
But the Livingston Fourth of July committee is working with the Atwater Fourth of July committee to improve next year's events between the two cities since they're so close.
The two committees can maximize entertainment by possibly staggering the fireworks shows -- one on Independence Day and one the day before, Valadez said. They can also share vendors.
With the influx of residents from others cities that also canceled fireworks shows, many estimated Atwater's Fourth of July celebration to be the largest ever this year.
Greg McDaniel, chairman of the Atwater Fourth of July committee, estimated there were about 45,000 people there just by noon.
While the website is doing a lot to ensure the fireworks will be back next year in Livingston, it's more important that the entire celebration become a city event again, said former mayor Gurpal Samra.
Though it's only September, it's never too early to start thinking about next year's Fourth of July festivities in Livingston.
Reporter Mike North can be reached at (209) 385-2453 or email@example.com.