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Stanislaus State cancels Fourth of July fireworks show

TURLOCK — California State University, Stanislaus, officials said this morning it will cancel its annual Fourth of July fireworks and concert because of a lack of financial sponsors.

The "Fantastic Fourth" celebration has been held on campus for 24 years, bringing 200,000 people to the university.

The show, including the fireworks, concert and activities for children, costs more than $50,000 to produce, university officials said.

County Bank had been a main sponsor of the event, but its 39 branches were closed by the state in February.

"We regret having to cancel such a popular program, but there just isn’t enough money or personnel to support the event," university spokeswoman Kristin Olsen said.

Olsen said she hopes to bring the program back next year to celebrate the university's 50th anniversary if enough sponsors can be found.

Communities all over the country have been canceling their fireworks programs as a result of the recession.

Officials of the San Jose America Festival that features a fireworks show recently announced their program was being canceled, and the city of Stockton said it may have to cancel its event unless sponsors are found.

Bee staff writer Merrill Balassone can be reached at 578-2337.

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