Vendor calls it quits with Gas fireworks display



June 25, 2015 - 12:00 AM

Just like they’ve done the past 33 summers, Gerry and Chad Diltz will set up their fireworks stand along U.S. 54 in Gas this weekend.
The father-son team will open Black Cat Fireworks on Saturday, the first day fireworks can be sold legally in Kansas.
But unlike years past, the Diltzes won’t end their July 4 holiday with a bang.
The Diltzes retired their fireworks extravaganza in Gas, a show that drew so many onlookers city officials would close off most of the streets on the north side of town each July 4.
“The cost just became so prohibitive,” Gerry Diltz said.
The Diltzes started their shows as a token of appreciation to the Gas community for supporting their fireworks stand, using any profits from their sales to buy more elaborate shells.
But as the elaborate fireworks became more expensive, the Diltzes eventually found themselves losing money each year.
“It got to the point I was having to pay money out of my own pocket,” Gerry Diltz said.
That leaves two large public fireworks shows for Independence Day.
But even though July 4 falls on a Saturday this year, neither show will be that evening.
Humboldt’s annual Independence Day extravaganza is scheduled for the evening of July 3, at the Humboldt Municipal Golf Course.
And the Iola Elks, who have a day filled with activity at Elks Lake, are holding their fireworks show the evening of July 5 because of a schedule conflict with Elks member Russell Beth.
Other local fireworks stands opening this weekend include the Allen County Animal Rescue Facility stand near Jump Start Travel Center on East Street, the Jake’s Fireworks stand on South State Street north of Elm Creek.

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