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story.lead_photo.caption The Holts Summit July 3 fireworks festival has been canceled. The Jefferson City and Fulton fireworks shows are still on the calendar. Photo by News Tribune

The city of Holts Summit announced Monday that the third annual Holts Summit Festival and Fireworks Show, scheduled for July 3, has been canceled.

Mayor Landon Oxley based the decision on public health and logistical concerns, City Administrator Hanna Lechner said.

"We just felt like right now it's probably not the best thing for our community," Lechner said.

The festivities typically draw 15,000-20,000 people, many from outside Holts Summit and Callaway County.

"There's a lot of unknown risk when dealing with an event that large," Lechner said.

With state and local officials currently asking businesses to make sacrifices and limit crowds, Lechner said it doesn't make sense for Holts Summit to turn around and put on a crowd-drawing spectacle.

"And we don't know how this is going to affect us six months from now," Lechner said.

This year's show was expected to cost $20,000, of which $15,000 was sponsor-donated. After speaking with the sponsor and the fireworks company, the city has worked out a deal to roll over the funds into next year's event.

Due to the disruption of COVID-19, the city hasn't yet done much of its usual advertising for the event. Similarly, Lechner said, by this time in past years, the city had heard from vendors.

"Last year we had almost 40 vendors," Lechner said, explaining that this year only three vendors have reached out so far.

The city's Facebook post announcing the cancellation quickly garnered dozens of reactions, comments and shares.

"A lot of people are upset, and we understand, but we're trying to look at the bigger picture and do what we feel is best for our community," Lechner said.

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