Variety of activities available for Independence Day

John Richmeier
The Leavenworth Times

A variety of activities will be available to local residents for celebrating the Fourth of July including fireworks shows.

Fort Leavenworth will have its annual Fourth of July celebration. But because of COVID-19 restrictions, this year's celebration on the fort will not be open to the general public.

Jeff Wingo, public affairs officer for the fort's garrison, said the event will be open only to people who have identification cards that enable them to have access to the Army installation.

However, public fireworks shows are planned for Sunday in the cities of Basehor and Easton. And the city of Lansing will have a fireworks show a day ahead of the holiday on Saturday.

Lansing's fireworks show will be the finale of the city's Independence Days celebration. The one-day festival will begin at noon at Bernard Park, 15650 Gilman Road.. The fireworks show will begin around 9:45 p.m.

Because of wet field conditions, no parking will be permitted at Bernard Park. People wanting to attend the festival can park at either Lansing Elementary School, 450 W. Mary St., or Lansing High School, 1412 147th St., and use a free shuttle bus service to get to the park.

The city of Easton will have a fireworks show at dusk Sunday at Easton City Park, according to a message posted on the city's Facebook page.

The Booming with Pride: Basehor Independence Day Celebration is scheduled for Sunday at Basehor-Linwood High School, 2108 N. 155th St. Food trucks will be available at that location starting at 5:30 p.m., according to a Facebook post for the event.

A parade will begin at 7:30 p.m. at 155th Street and Leavenworth Road and end at the high school. A fireworks show is scheduled for 9 p.m.

People may want to set off their own fireworks in celebration of the Fourth of July. However, most fireworks are prohibited in the city of Leavenworth by ordinance. Toy smoke devices and toy paper caps are allowed.

Some of the other cities in Leavenworth County restrict the hours during which fireworks can be discharged on the Fourth of July.

For those planing to discharge fireworks, the Greater Kansas City and Northwest Missouri Chapter of the American Red Cross offers safety tips. The Red Cross cautions people to never give fireworks to small children and never throw or point fireworks at others.

The Red Cross also recommends keeping a water supply close by as a precaution. It also is recommended that people who light fireworks wear eye protection, and they should only light one firework at a time.

Some may plan to have a cookout this holiday weekend. The National Fire Protection Association has offered safety tips for grilling food.

The NFPA advises people to make sure their gas grills are working properly and never leave equipment unattended. Grills should be placed at least three feet from anything that can burn including deck railings and overhanging branches. Children and pets should be kept away from any grilling equipment that is in use.

The NFPA also advises people to properly use fuel and fire starters. Use only charcoal starter fluid to ignite charcoals, and never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to a fire.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment is recommending people take measures to protect themselves against mosquito bites this holiday weekend.

Many areas of the state are considered to be at a high risk level for West Nile virus, according to a news release from KDHE.

Symptoms of West Nile virus can range from a slight headache and low-grade fever to swelling of the brain or brain tissue and, in rare cases, death.

KDHE recommends people use insect repellent on their skin and clothing when outdoors.

The KDHE also recommends older adults and people who are immunocompromised consider limiting their outside exposure during dusk and dawn.

Many mosquitos are at their most active at dusk and dawn, according to the KDHE news release.

People can reduce mosquito breeding sites by emptying standing water from flower pots, buckets and barrels. The KDHE recommends that children's wading pools be kept empty when they are not in use. It also is recommended that people change the water in pet dishes and replace water in bird baths on a weekly basis. People also can drill holes in tire swings to prevent them from filling with water.

Twitter: @LVTNewsJohnR