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fireworks

How to celebrate July 4 without big fireworks shows in Sonoma County

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It’s going to be a different kind of Fourth of July this year. As concerns about the coronavirus continue and health orders ban mass gatherings, major annual public fireworks displays have been canceled.

But that doesn’t mean folks won’t celebrate in their own way, though the festivities may be quieter, smaller and at home. We asked readers to tell us, via email and Facebook, how they’ll mark Independence Day this year.

Answers ranged from hopeful to indifferent to skeptical. Here’s what they had to say.

Mary Jenkins of Santa Rosa knows the mood may be more subdued this year on July 4, but she still looks forward to longstanding family traditions.

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Santa Rosa fields widespread complaints of illegal fireworks

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Matthew Corley/Shutterstock
Matthew Corley/Shutterstock

The fireworks detonated around 3 a.m. Tuesday, triggering a brief spell of bedlam in the Santa Rosa home of Lisa Ostello. Her dog, a 7-year-old pit bull mix named Sadie, panicked and tried to get out of the house. Partially blind, Sadie ran into a wall.

“It was awful,” said Ostello, who has twice called police to report what’s become an almost nightly rendition, the boom and barrage of illegal fireworks in the city. Those explosions terrify her dog and are rampant, she said, in her neighborhood, just east of Roseland. “You never know when they’re going to go off. It doesn’t just happen at night.”

Her primary concern is for Sadie, who also suffers from a brain tumor, and for other dogs frightened by these fireworks, which are illegal in all but three Sonoma County cities: Cloverdale, Rohnert Park and Sebastopol. Complaints also have come from those suffering post-traumatic stress syndrome, who can be triggered by sudden, sharp noises that sound like gunfire.

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