Park City moves to ensure 4th of July is a blast |

Park City moves to ensure 4th of July is a blast

Planner needed in absence of now-defunct Park City Ambassadors

Crowds line Main Street during the 4th of July parade in 2016. The Independence Day festivities in Park City draw upward of 37,000 people for the parade, sporting events and fireworks. City Hall wants to hire an event planner to assist with organizing the days lineup in 2017.
Park Record file photo

City Hall wants people in Park City on the 4th of July to have an all-day, locally flavored blast.

The municipal government has published a document seeking an event planner to organize the festivities for what is traditionally one of the biggest days of the summer for the Park City tourism industry. The day’s schedule will not change substantially from a lineup that has long included a parade, fireworks and other happenings, but there is expected to be significant alterations to the organizing.

The now-defunct Park City Ambassadors, a civic group that operated under the umbrella of the Park City Chamber/Bureau, served as the organizer of the 4th of July festivities alongside City Hall for years. The lack of a lead organizer like the Park City Ambassadors prompted the municipal government to issue what is known as a request for proposals for an event organizer. Proposals are due April 17. The document indicates there is up to $20,000 available for the hiring. City Hall says a hiring will cover the 2017 festivities only.

The search for an event planner is underway amid concerns about the flavor of the 4th of July festivities. There have been questions about whether the celebration has lost some of its local funk over time as numerous corporate interests have entered the parade. The parade, one of just two scheduled on an annual basis, descends Main Street on a route to City Park. Crowds line the route and then follow the parade entries to the park for more celebrations.

The City Hall document says upward of 37,000 people celebrate the 4th of July in Park City, making it one of the largest single-day attractions of the year.

“It is the community spirit, history, uniqueness, and diversity of the event’s offerings that drive visitors to the event and keep locals coming year after year,” the request for proposals says, adding that changes in recent years have “led Park City Municipal to take on a larger role as the applicant of the event, as well as, the planning and facilitation of the event.”

The event planner hired by City Hall will maintain relationships with groups that “make this fun and funky event a success,” the document says. Some of the assignments will include coordinating vendors, the parade, the fireworks and volunteers, it says. The document outlines a scheduled starting the week of April 30 with introductory meetings and ending the week of July 30 with a wrap of the event. City Hall anticipates the event planner will spend 200 hours on work related to the contract.

Jenny Diersen, a special events coordinator for the municipal government, said the event planner will be involved in preparing the full slate of activities, starting in the morning and running until the nighttime fireworks. The activities include a rugby tournament, a pancake breakfast and a five-kilometer run in addition to the parade and fireworks display, which is held at Park City Mountain Resort. Diersen said the event planner will coordinate with the organizers of the various events.

The Park City Chamber/Bureau on Thursday said it does not intend to submit a proposal, indicating it does not have the volunteer resources to organize the 4th of July festivities. City Hall had not received a proposal by midday on Thursday.

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