Monday, April 8, 2013

No More Fourth of July Fireworks at Allen Pond

Fourth of July Revelers Dance at Allen Pond Park, July 4, 2011
Bowie Living has learned that the days of watching 4th of July fireworks at Allen Pond are over. Future City of Bowie Fourth of July celebrations will take place at Prince George's Stadium - home of the Bowie Baysox.

According to Bowie Mayor G. Fred Robinson, the crowds have grown larger than can be reasonably accommodated at Allen Pond Park, and traffic continues to be a problem despite trying multiple traffic plans.  The Mayor also indicated that an increased use of unauthorized fireworks at Allen Pond created public safety concerns.

Prince George's Stadium was designed to hold 10,000 people, although approximately 14,000 baseball fans attended the Double-A All Star Game at the stadium in 2000.  Two parking lots can hold more than 2,500 cars, and it's believed that the close proximity to Routes 301 and 50 will create better traffic flow than past Fourth of July celebrations in Bowie.  The stadium provides controlled entrance points which should help keep unauthorized fireworks out.  The stadium will provide Fourth of July revelers with seating, restroom facilities and concessions.  An entertainment stage will be set-up - most likely along the third base line.

The festivities will take place as usual on July 4th.  The Bowie Baysox will be playing a game in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania that night, and Mayor Robinson said that the Baysox have expressed a willingness to make the stadium available to the City of Bowie for future Fourth of July celebrations.  The Baysox will have a fireworks show on Wednesday, July 3rd at the stadium after a game with the Akron Aeros.

Prince George's Stadium is the fourth City of Bowie fireworks venue.  City fireworks displays were originally held at the Bowie Race Track before the annual event was moved to Allen Pond Park.  At Allen Pond, the fireworks were originally set off across the pond from the amphitheater, but housing construction forced the city to move the fireworks display to the athletic fields at the park.
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73 comments:

  1. From what I hear it's pretty ghetto now.

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    1. Yes and yes.

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    2. From what you hear? So you admit that you're not smart enough to explore and draw your own conclusions.

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  2. That is so lame. I loved allens pond on the 4th. I will not be attending the Baysox firework display. Also traffic is horrible on 301 when the Baysox let out of a game and the traffic lights stop trafic on 301 for like 15 mins. This will make trafic even worse, even for people who are not from Bowie, people who are just traveling down 301. This whole thing is completly dissapointing. Im more than positive there will be a huge decrease in the amount of people who attend the fireworks display if it is held at this location. : (

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    1. A decrease in people is good... much less of a clean up effort. And less potential for crime.

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  3. I am not happy about this, I know traffic gets bad, but it is going to be as bad on 301 as well. Except youll be waiting hours to get out of the stadium parking lot, instead of down Northview Drive.

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    1. No one is going to be waiting hrs to exit the parking lot. Stop exagerrating.

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  4. After working for the city for 6 years I can say that I doubt the large crowd is the sole reason for the move. When the lights went out for the show to start one year, 6 group fights simultaneously broke out. Not to mention a girl was pushed into traffic and got hit by a car.

    If it were up to me I would get rid of it all together, it's been proven that the some of the people that live around here can't handle this kind of simple festivity.

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  5. Now where will all the underage sex going to take place if there are no convenient quiet woods nearby.

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  6. one year, 6 group fights simultaneously broke out. Not to mention a girl was pushed into traffic and got hit by a car

    This is exactly why they're moving it. Allen Pond has no security and South Bowie (where the pond is located) is nothing but extremely ghetto people. Lots of young black hoodlums and each year, more and more crime takes place at Allen Pond 4th festivities. It's quite disgusting, honestly, to watch your city that was once quiet, crime-free suburbia, turn into a Washington DC outskirt. Anyone who has lived in Bowie for 20+ years knows how terrible this city has become and the public schools are a fine example of the type of adults we are raising. Children with extremely poor character and low morals. Then we wonder why they turn into rap-music-listening, gold-chain-wearing gangbangers who care about nothing but marijuana and the newest pair of Jordan's. THIS is why Allen Pond is no longer suitable for the city's families. Bowie has become a ghetto wasteland.

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    1. 2001 called, they want their offensive stereotypes back. If you're going to make a racist fool of yourself, at least be up to date about it.

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    2. But it's true... You can be as PC as you want about it, but denying why Bowie has turned into a DC outskirt "ghetto wasteland" is being willingly ignorant.

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    3. idk who you are but don't talk about bowie and its people like that. not all of us are ghetto. young black hoodlums? gangbangers?? I mean, speak for yourself but bowie is wonderful and so is allen pond. there is no place in the world that is crime free! ive been to allen pond on fourth of july for a long time and I don't kno where you sit but I never see people with gold chains. and how dare you call bowie a ghetto wasteland and then talk about the public schools? my family has gone to public school here and all graduated college with degrees. and I myself go to middle school in the area and I take all high school classes and there are a lot of people like me. And btw, its quite disgusting, to have someone talk about the city you grew up in, but get everything they said WRONG. do get ur facts straight next time before u start talking.

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    4. Hate to admit it, but when folks moved out for bigger properties and left their current ones to 'rent' out - that's when things went downhill. Piggy back that with Section 8! Nami you're too young to understand. What you think is 'normal' or cool is an embarassment to folks who have worked and suffered to make a decent life. Two generations are LOST, no sense of pride for themselves, their families, their life! By the time YOU understand it'll be even worse. Ignorance breeds ignorance!!

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    5. Bs. She's not too young to understand. In fact she smart enough to know not to stereo type and make exaggerated comments. More power to her!

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    6. Shes ignorant to the facts then because i went to bowie high and graduated in 97 it was getting bad then when they were shipping landover kids in to school and all i said to myself was wow bowie is gonna be screwed 10 years from now and i was right. I go to different states all the time and honestly no other area ive been in is as bad as dc md and va other satates have pockets of bad areas but around here its whole counties. Its unreal what this world has come to as soon as a white person says one thing he or she is automatically a racist. But yet black people talk about white people all day they even have bet channel. Let white people havr a channel like that and see what happens. This whole black white thing kills me why am i judged because my ancestors had slaves and why is that an excuse for you to act the way you do plus blacks in africa sold blacks to whites back then. Sorry to get off subject but thats what this whole column has came to. A black and white thing and yes south bowie is ghetto as shit you loom at a black neighborhood and compare it to a white one and you can immediately tell the differance. You will see white people outside cleaning in a white area or being peaceful. In a black area you see nothing but hoochies druggies wanna be thugs and the area looks like shit. But then black people will blame white people for that too. But i guess im racist for stating the facts. I know hard working honest black folk who say the same shit that im saying. Its not racist when you state facts. Some people just cant handle the truth and the truth is instead of worrying about jordans and clothes drugs and guns and finish school you would be able to get a good job. But again white people have it so much easier its 2013 its already been proven that a black man can be whatever he wants to be. We need to take our neighborhoods back and start going to more and more community meetings because i dont want to even raise a child around here its so bad. I would feel like i let my child down just by raising him or her around here.

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    7. Tell me about it have any of you guys ever went to the tgi fridays. Thats a serious joke right there.

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  7. I grew up in Bowie. I moved in 1983. Back then it was an ideal place to live, I loved it and always wanted to go back. It's a shame that it's all ghetto now. This is what they call diversity.

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    1. "Ghetto" being your coded and racist word for too many African Americans...

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    2. Yep your exactly right.

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    3. You know its funny how you bums will sell your moms soul to try and get out the ghetto but because white people dont want to be around it we are racist.

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  8. Heartbreaking....
    I Seems to have been running from the ghetto since I was 10 and it always catches up.....

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  9. Bowie used to be so nice. It was the last city in P.G. worth living in. Now, the hoodrats can have it. Thank God for Bethesda!

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    1. Bethesda is so cornball.. u can have it.

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  10. Are the fireworks still free or are we going to be charged parking and an entrance fee????? Cause I can just parkj at Walmart for free

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  11. That's a damn shame right there. Not surprising though. Bowie, they've taken the "neighbor" out of "neighborhood", all that's left is "hood".

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  12. If you don't live in Bowie anymore then why do you care what goes on here. I have lived in Bowie for 15 years and it has been a great experience. Guess what I have an affordable mortgage, a nice house and good neighbors. Haters need to move on and stop talking about how good it used to be. I have attended several firework displays at Allen Pond and it was great. Most locals know to watch from a parking lot or shopping center anyway. Oh and Bowie filled with "hoodrats" really. Everyone I know is gainfully employed, educated and doing right by their families and community.

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    1. I can second that. We moved here 2.5 years ago and loved it. We live in a nice neighborhood with all kind of colors. Everybody is nice and helpful. And no, it is not one of the big houses neighborhood. You can find good and bad things it doesn't matter where you go.

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    2. I have lived here for 17 years peacefully among my Black, White, Indian, Asian and all varieties of neighbors. Stop stereotyping. The bottom line is that Bowie is not the covenant only -- established by Levitt that could only sell to Whites. The covenant was pure racism and bigotry. Let those of us who live in peace and with diversity celebrate it. Bowie is not perfect today and certainly was no utopia in the past.

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  13. yeah, to many crickets at the pond these days!

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  14. The article says nothing about crime or fights. All these comments are just another example of the racism that exists today. I suppose it makes all these "closet bigots" happy they can express their real feelings "Anonymously." I'm sure it's not the the phony face you put on at work.

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  15. I think the real problem is the cost of clean up after everyone leaves and the cost of the fireworks. The tax payers have to foot the bill. Everyone is trying to cut cost...not so much "traffic"....which was becoming a mess...

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  16. Both the performance and the fireworks will be free of charge and tickets will not be required. Gates open at 6 pm
    Hubcaps performing at 7 firework display at 9 pm...still sad for this at Allen Pond was a tradition for some families...smh

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  17. it's all about the money now you wait and see

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  18. Good move. It keeps the crowds down and results in increased revenue.... its a win for the city.

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  19. I wish they would have charged an entrance fee.

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    1. Whaat? don't be silly, this is the 4th of July, Independence Day, a celebration for all Americans, not for just those that can afford a ticket...*geeze*

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  20. Over development, building the Town Center, the tearing down of Landover Mall all contributed to the increase of the ghetto climate that has plauged parts of Bowie. It started in the 90's and now it's just an over crowded traffic nightmare on weekends along 301 and 97.
    The Town Center has already experienced rampant shoplifitng and crime in the parking lot. Those of you defending Bowie are delusional. At one time Bowie had no police department, why do you think they have one now?

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    1. Thought the topic was Allen Pond vs. Baysox Stadium for 4th of July.
      As for delusional, hardly, just realistic on Bowie vs. the rest of the Metro area...seen the news lately? think you are exaggerating a bit.
      Been in Bowie 19 years, it has its bad and good, and I have seen changes in the population but it's like anywhere else, there is a wave of disrespect spewing from our teens, most of them anyway (black, white, brown, yellow whatever) they seem to have no morals, values, respect or sense of community. its sad but it's not just Bowie, you can go further South or North and find the same thing. It's also not entirely all their fault, they need places to go, things to do to stay out of trouble, Bowie doesn't offer very much and kids just end up hanging out on street corners.
      I saw it when my kids were coming up and its just gotten worse. The City needs to offer more services for our teens.

      There is a police department now because we have more people living in Bowie, all those new Mc-mansions that have been built, the Town Center, you know, regular city type of growth....wouldn't call it "over development".

      I live off 97 and yes, there is traffic but not ALL the time and EVERY WEEKEND..that's just an exaggeration.

      I love Bowie....do you even live in Bowie, if you do, and your so unhappy, maybe you should consider another community to call home.

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    2. Traffic is not a nightmare in bowie. Try VA traffic on for size.

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    3. Nice try defending a city that has changed so much in the last 15 years i dont even recognize it anymore. Traffic on 301 is terrible. There is a pond, ice skating ring, movie theatre, library tennis courts pools reck centers plenty of things for kids to do. You lazy parents let your kids be influenced by rap music and get them jordans so they try to impress each other and then sell drugs all while your neighborhoods go to hell. Who are you trying to fool have you seen the jails lately filled with whites i dont think so. Like i said before if black people liked black people then they wouldnt be out killing each other. Black people from england,africa or any where else cant stand blacks from america and act nothing like yall and thats the truth. Do some research and tell me im lying. Pay more attention to your kids and teach them morals instead of telling them that white people are devils. Its the parents who are at fault because yall never had any guidence anybody who has a brain can figure that out. Ingnorance breeds ignorance. Lol this is what a black person said to me the other day when i asked him if he knew proper english. He said i aint from here yo so i aint gotta sound like yall i said where are you from and he said africa i said really what part he had no clue he just knew his ancestors were. Thats just plain ignorance. Yall always say the same shit like africa is home africa this africa that shit aint nobody stopping yall from goin back. I bet as soon as yall got to africa yall would be killing each other to get back.

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  21. Change is hard for everyone, but just take a second to think about it, although we all love to just be able to wander over to Allen's Pond and it has been a yearly event, things will probably have a more organized feel and there will be security.... so maybe having it at the stadium isn't so bad. Give it a try, then if you don't like it, complain.

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  22. Can't we all just get along. ...
    Remember, God is love. Please be respectfull of that and hold all negative comments. Happy 4th!......LIVE-LAUGH-LOVE....Mercy

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    1. Live love laugh. .. lol. Yeah right. Not in this day of nagativity.

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    2. Clearly you're certifiable. You just had to respond to a positive attempt. Did you not recognize God and the request. Now that's ignorance.

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  23. More activities for youth--Hmm I'm an adult with 2 children who now attend college. My family moved to Bowie about 12 years ago. I previously lived in Upstate NY (suburbia to the max), NYC (urban), Philly (suburbia w a hint of urban)--believe me I have seen it all. With population growth you have all types of changes that will occur--good & bad. I appreciate the dialogue I see here because it allows people to express their honest opinions. Aside from the back & forth about racism, stereotypes, etc.--an issue was mentioned that I think does raise alot of substance. It was said that "THE CITY NEEDS TO OFFER MORE SERVICES FOR OUR TEENS". In many ways I think that's true. But I'm an (older!) adult so it's best to hear from you all. What are some types of examples of services that would be beneficial?? Now is your time to not just vent--but talk about something that could help improve the City.You would be surprised that your info would likely actually make it happen....What are teens looking to do that is CONSTRUCTIVE that is not being offered here???

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    1. They are not looking for constructive things to do thats a cop out. There are plenty things to do. The truth is black youth are trouble and its a fact its not something im making up because im racist its a fact. Just look at the data it proves it. White kids are not pert of bloods and crips and all these gangs. There are good black kids dont get me wrong but the majority are sunk into this rap bullshit and are getting locked up at a alarming rate. You could put every activity in the world in bowie and it wont change a thing. There are plenty of activities for kids to do in bowie thats just plain stupidity to say that there is nothing for kids to do. If that was the truth then why do you live here.

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  24. Im in my mid 40s and I lived in Bowie in the late 70a early 80s in the b section. True it was 99% white then, and great for kids because sports were huge in bowie (Bowie is for soccer) and I played football pads helmets. Then I moved away for 10 plus years and when I came back it turned into little DC

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  25. Bowie is worse than D.C.

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  26. Bowie is a great place to live. Nothing stays the same and crime is everywhere including Bethesda. The Allen Pond fireworks display was a tradition but I can respect the decision to move it for safety and crowd control purposes. I do feel saddened for the youth, with all the budget cuts there are no jobs, fewer internships and no one is volunteering to show them other positive things that they could do with their idle time.

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    1. Bowie is a lovely community.

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  27. Fireworks were great tonight at the stadium..It really felt like a close knit community event. Great job Bowie!. Let the new tradition begin!

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  28. The Bowie City Council sure ruined a good thing, the past 14 years at Allen Pond have been great. Went to the fireworks tonight at the Baysox stadium (what a place to celebrate the 4th :-o. They cut the length of the fireworks to 20 minutes, used to be 30-35 min long. Traffic was an absolute NIGHTMARE. Neither one of us have ever seen anything quite like it. It took 1 hour and 35 minutes to get from the parking lot out to Route 301. 1 hour and 35 minutes.... to drive what... 1 mile. What a joke. The longest it ever took to get home from Allen Pond to Crofton was 45 min. Spending the 4th of July evenings at Allen Pond was quite enjoyable. Tonights event at the stadium was a poor excuse for an Independence Day celebration. We are now done with Bowie (and many more with us if you heard the talk tonight) unless they decide to move the celebrations back where they belong, at the park. The next Independence Day will be celebrated anywhere but Bowie.

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    1. The fireworks display has never been 30-35 mins. What shows were you watching?

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    2. I agree!! I went 11yrs ago and remember it being 20mins. That's long enough because we were in the bleacher section (very close) and the boom was enough by 20mins. I enjoyed it last night. The bathrooms were clean, staff nice, good snacks and no fights I saw. Traffic leaving was a bit much but I think it was a kink. Everything else went off without a hitch though. Thank you to R Park who posted the details.

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  29. Really wonderful event tonight. Maybe took 45 mins or so to exit the stadium but really who cares bc you're out having fun right? Firework session was great and plenty long enough.

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  30. 45 min to exit? Did you leave by helicopter? They were people still trying to get out of there 2,5 hrs after it ended.

    I have actually timed the fireworks display previous years at Allen Pond and yes, they have been both 30 and 35 minutes long. Last year it was shorter, 28 min. Good memories but all good things usually comes to an end. The last reason for visiting Bowie is gone. Now we'll find a new place to celebrate in another county.

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    1. You have actually timed them?.. well actually i have also. None have ever lasted for 30 minutes. Fireworks on the National Mall wont even last for that long. Just in case you were headed down there next year >>> http://www.nps.gov/foju/fireworks.htm.

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    2. I seriously doubt that it took anyone 2.5 hrs to exit. Please!

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    3. It took us an hour and there was a ratchet Suv of hateful people who trapped my partially pulled out truck and when asked by two of us to move they ignored us ridiculously. I was going the opposite direction and explained so. They looked at me and turned away. Thank goodness I had just enough room to back up and cut a few times til I could turn within the parking spaces.

      I hope those people realized that ugliness was unnecessary. Glad it was not me who did that to someone. Feels good to be reminded just how much charachter my family and I have compared to others. They didn't wait 2.5hrs at that time either so yeah no clue who may have.

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    4. Character and know that we didn't tell them "Move!". We explained we were turning about to turn out. No one was behind them and 10 cars was ahead of them in our row to get to the main stadium road to 301. We were nice but I did express my disgust with their behavior after realizing they were not going to back up to let me turn left.

      More so I was half way out in front of them to turn right, behind car #10 smh. They cut me to the point I wouldn't have been 11 because car.#10 was right at my parking space so I could only pull out partially in preparation of turning.

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  31. I was very disappointed last nights fireworks, you could barely see them. At Allen Pond there wasn't a bad seat in the whole park. I felt way less safe last night then ever at Allen Pond. It's is only one way in and one way out so if anything bad happened i.e. fighting or other violence there would have been a stampede. The city leaders think moving the fireworks to the stadium was a "win win" but the only winners are the city leaders. It's sad because the residents of the city loose. I called and spoke to a person in the city works office and he got an attitude with me. At Allen Pond the children are sheltered from speeding and bad driving which was not the case last night. People were speeding through the parking lots with no regard to the children who were playing. Allen Pond provided shelter and safety with this aspect. Also Bj's got a gas delivery 4 minutes before the fireworks started. That is exactly what we need while watching fireworks a GAS TANKER! Call the City of Bowie and let your voices be heard. I did and all I got was ATTITUDE! It was like they didn't care about our safety concerns about last night. When I called him out on it he said that he worked a long day as if that his long day was less important than the safety of the City of Bowie Residents.

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    1. Im not sure why you thought you could view the fireworks from BJ's parking lot. You should have made your way into the stadium. We had great seats for the band and fireworks display. The stadium could have held even more people. I can honestly say that it was the best display that I've ever seen.

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  32. Obviously you were not in the stadium. Nobody told you to watch from BJ's parking lot. I was at Allen Pond the last two years. Two years ago, a lady was beat down by 6 tuff guys in a pimped out SUV. Thats classy and safe!

    Last year, Allen Pond was trending on twitter and gang fights were expected. Fireworks were thrown into the crowds of families right in front of the ice rink. Most families couldn't enjoy the show and left early. Again, real safe.

    Thank you to the City of Bowie elected officials, City of Bowie staff, Baysox staff, and MNCPPC staff for providing a safe environment for my family to celebrate the 4th of July... in the stadium, watching a fun concert and an outstanding fireworks show.

    To those that complain about a poor fireworks show, I recommend you actually come to the event inside the stadium. Though it was busy, there was still a good number of seats available. The fireworks show was fantastic!!

    Do not complain about an event when you are watching from a shopping center (not the event site), allowing your kids to play in a parking lot, and then preach that it is someone elses fault for not ensuring the safety of you and your family! How else would a gas tank truck block your view??? I don't think BJ's delivers gas to the infield inside the stadium.

    Happy 4th of July. Peace!!

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    1. I agree. I think that the city did a wonderful job in organizing the event. With the new setup people can continue to picnic at allen pond and afterwards make their way over to the stadium to view the entertainment and fireworks in an organized, secure and safe environment. To me it makes for an even more exciting day.

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    2. I never said my kids were playing I traffic other kids were playing. I am concerned about the safety of other peoples children unlike y'all fortunate ones who made it into the stadium. The entrance to the Stadium was closed when we got there at 8:45pm.

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    3. Couldn't you have walked to the stadium from BJs??

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    4. I really don't think is was worth the risk with the way people were speeding through the parking lots. We found a nice patch of grass and played it safe.

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  33. How about showing up for a fireworks show more than 30 minutes ahead of time. Sorry to be so critical, but.... its a 4th of July celebration with some 10,000 people expected. The concert started at 7 p.m. I suspect you were not the only person though that came in between 8 and 9 p.m.

    I just have difficulty buying into the concern; someone shows up late to a major event, doesn't make it into the venue, and chooses to go on an adjacent private property that was not intended for the event, and then is concerned with inadequate safety management on the private property, and then blames "city leaders".

    It was nice for BJ's to keep their lot open. They could have just closed the lot and not allowed anyone to use it, or they could have charged money for parking since it is private property.

    On to constructive dialogue...

    Better traffic management is needed after the event. Certainly most people expect long traffic lines to events like these. I'm sure its not easy getting out of DC on the 4th.

    Traffic flow from Ball Park Drive could be all 4 lanes exiting with no incoming lane traffic after the event. Two of the lanes could be used to funnel out the BJ's and Home Depot lots, while the other two could take care of the stadium traffic.

    I think more traffic lights need to be controlled by police, not just on rt. 301 but also for many lights down rt 197. It can take 15 minutes on a normal day to travel 1 mile from Excalibur (Walmart) to Rt. 50, hitting every single light on red. It can also take 5-10 minutes from Rt. 301 at 197 to get to Kenhill Drive on a typical day, again hitting every red light. The lights are poorly synched on a regular day and traffic gets bottlenecked regularly.

    To manage just the couple lights on 301 near the stadium is to not recognize the traffic bottleneck that occurs regularly on 3 and 197 respectively. It appeared that the traffic was funneled out of the parking areas, but was just blocked downstream by poorly synched lights. The traffic problem I believe originated further downstream due to unmanned lights/intersections.

    Traffic exiting from the Lowes and Target parking areas made things more difficult. I had friends that watched from these locations. Traffic took some time to exit from these spots too. Most of the traffic funnels onto Rt. 3/301 or 197.

    There are probably a dozen or so lights that need to be managed manually. Police should look at controlling the lights on 301 from Excalibur to the Melford/Belair Drive exit, and Rt. 301/197 light to the Kenhill Drive light on 197.

    If all the lights can be manually synchronized throughout all the lights mentioned on 301/197, it would ease the exit issues.

    On a separate note, I noticed several police officers that were at traffic lights on rt. 301. They were doing a great job, but they were dressed in dark uniforms and had no yellow or reflective vests on. They were difficult to see at night.

    Please, please make sure our police officers are safe and get them proper traffic vests to make sure they remain safe. It was just an accident waiting to happen.

    Possibly some higher fireworks can be added to be enjoyed by people that can't make it into the stadium. Truth is, not everyone is going to make it to the stadium for various reasons. Adding higher fireworks would be nice. I have friends that watched from Melford, Kohls, Lowes, and Home Depot.

    Thanks to all those that made this happen. Much safer environment than Allen Pond! A little slow getting out, but most people expected that

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    1. Actually they were early... by 30 mins.

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    2. PLEASE PLEASE REBUILD / BOWIE HIGH SCHOOL........!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! IT NEEDS IT

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