Elver Park fireworks canceled - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

New beginnings for Rhythm & Booms means end of Elver Park fireworks

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MADISON (WKOW) -- When Mayor Paul Soglin announced that Rhythm & Booms would be moved from Warner Park to Lake Monona, he also said the 25-plus-year history of the fireworks at Elver Park would come to an end.

"Our commitment to Warner and Elver are going to be merged into this one event," Mayor Soglin said of Rhythm & Booms Wednesday.

Some say the mayor forgot to include others affected by the cancellation when he made his decision.

"I was certainly surprised," said District 1 Alder Lisa Subeck, who represents the Elver Park area. "The Mayor's office did not involve the alders on the Southwest side."

Subeck says she does not know if the mayor's decision was a financial one, but she feels too much was contingent on Rhythm & Booms.

"Unfortunately in making this decision around the big event, we've really lost sight of just what the fireworks mean for our Southwest side neighborhoods," Subeck said. "This is one of those events that we see low-income neighborhoods and high-income neighborhoods all coming together, all coming to the fireworks. Kids play together, people sit on blankets and share food. It really is this community experience."

Subeck says people who live near Elver Park are already calling her.

"One of my constituents said that for the last 15 years she's been walking there with her children -- who, when the first time they went, were babies and now are 14, 15 and 17 years old," Subeck said. "For them it's not just been a neighborhood tradition but a family tradition that's falling by the wayside."

Subeck says that she will be speaking with constituents and other alders in the area to come up with a plan to convince the mayor to reinstate the Elver Park fireworks.

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