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Fair Lawn Considering Multi-Day Fourth of July Festival

With the borough's fireworks display in jeopardy for next year and private donations tough to come by, two council members are looking at alternatives.

It's never too soon to start planning the celebration of your nation's independence; especially if it might save everyone some money.

Fair Lawn Deputy Mayor John Cosgrove and Councilman Kurt Peluso presented a preliminary plan to council Tuesday that re-envisions the borough's Fourth of July celebration as a multi-day, money making event.

Rather than a single night of fireworks, Cosgrove said he'd like to model Fair Lawn's Fourth of July celebration after the three-day Independence Day celebration held annually in Montville Township that includes a multi-day carnival and a fireworks display that's free to residents.

At Montville's Independence Day celebration this year, residents were treated to a three-day carnival with rides, a classic car show, live music, a 5K run, a flea market, a parade, a knockoff American Idol competition, hot air balloon rides and a free fireworks celebration.

Cosgrove said he already has a date set to meet with a representative from Montville to discuss replicating the event.

"I would just like the council's permission to look into this and bring some type of package where possibly we can keep the fireworks going and bring in some revenue," said Cosgrove, adding that Montville has either broken even or occasionally made money from its Independence Day celebration.

By contrast, Fair Lawn -- whose adult residents paid $7 in advance or $9 at the gate to see -- recouped only about $19,000 of the $30,000 the borough spent on the event, which includes employee overtime costs. Private donations, which have paid for a portion of the event in the past, were . 

As a result of the event's pricetag, Deputy Mayor .

With council's go ahead to investigate reworking the borough's Fourth of July celebration, Cosgrove and Peluso hope next year's celebration marks a new and sustainable beginning, rather than the end of Fourth of July fireworks in Fair Lawn.

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Michael Agosta September 07, 2012 at 12:30 AM
I didn't call you anything. I simply tried to guess your line of work with the hint you gave. JEN wrote: And here is a hint as to what I do: In my line of business I work there because it is a high crime area. Then you told me how your father was going to "explain" something to me. Then you ranted how your husband was going to meet me. Grow up.
JEN September 07, 2012 at 12:57 AM
Nice try...and BTW loved your contribution to the fireworks discussion... Oh wait, you made none!
JEN September 07, 2012 at 01:04 AM
And FL is a nice small town , I promise we will meet. I will know who you thanks to your pompous bio. I look forward to introducing myself we will see if calling my a prostitute, and drug dealer and a racist serves you well then.
Michael Agosta September 07, 2012 at 01:14 AM
Pompous bio? I guess you feel inadequate about yourself. Go see somebody for that. I believe there are meds to help you. I am always around in Fair Lawn. I can be easily found. Now drink a glass of warm milk, take your meds and go to bed.
Tommy P September 07, 2012 at 02:19 AM
If it made money, I wouldn't be as disappointed. The display doesn't hold a candle to what nearby New York City does and is an absolute money loser on top of it. Shame on Cosgrove for talking such nonsense! He is often the lone fiscally responsible council person then we get this. Fair Lawn's "celebrations" burn cash. If they want to do something as PRIVATE individuals who reimburse the town, thats one thing, but stealing from the rest of is disgusting and needs to be stopped!
Tommy P September 07, 2012 at 02:23 AM
Both should be legal. Law enforcement in these areas make us all less safe.
Tommy P September 07, 2012 at 02:25 AM
3rd generation or 3rd day we are all equal. Longevity does not grant you extra rights.
Deleted because of harassment September 07, 2012 at 04:15 AM
The "elephant in the room"? Please move out of Fair Lawn, as quickly as possible. Sorry, darling, but not everyone in the world is blind to overt bigotry, or wants to see it crawl out so overtly. I've been shopping there for years, but then again, i don't get my panties in a wad if not everyone in sight looks just like me. Then again, I prefer the company of others that do or do not share my skin color or accent as much as I do the rest of the human race. I just don't like the bigots wandering in my neighborhood, lest they case my house to make sure I'm white enough for them to use the same shopping cart afterwards...
Deleted because of harassment September 07, 2012 at 04:17 AM
Someone hand the saintly housewife a shovel. It's mighty deep in here tonight.
Deleted because of harassment September 07, 2012 at 04:23 AM
OK, Mike, you should get a prize for that comment... If either one of these princesses of the shopping cart had ever wandered into so much as an accidental trip on Route 20, they'd probably drop a load out of sheer terror. Mercy, i spent 14 years in Teaneck, and I can remember the reaction of some of the little former co-workers when they went with me into the grocery to pick up an cake and realized I and they and the manager were the only ones of our shade in the store. Thought they were going to bolt for the car and lock their doors. And the home values in my neighborhood were about twice what Fair Lawn was at the time.
Deleted because of harassment September 07, 2012 at 04:28 AM
Beter make sure it's not Choclate milk, Mike. It might be cozying up to something in the fridge. As for 3rd generation, must be one heck of an unbranched family tree for the past few...
JEN September 07, 2012 at 04:40 AM
LOL, no you are clearly a self touting pompous rump. I will check with my friends on KOC and board and the officers at VFW but I think I got you pegged. Anyway so I am on the edge of my seat still waiting your contribution to the fireworks discussion instead of this display narcissistic self righteousness and the personal attack you have engaged in instead of staying on topic. I am thinking you have nothing of value to offer this conversation or this community. But I will try and be open minded just for you...go ahead dazzle me with your self proclaimed experience & wisdom on the subject of July 4th 3 day carnival vs traditional fireworks? Do you think our PD & OEM are up to par to handle the proposed?
BerdanBellair September 07, 2012 at 09:56 AM
I like going to Shoprite in Fair Lawn, last 3 times I was there I saw shoplifters getting arrested by the police!
Michael Agosta September 07, 2012 at 10:45 AM
JEN writes: "LOL, no you are clearly a self touting pompous rump." Why does my bio bother you that much? I am quite proud of my accomplishments. I can give a rat's buttocks about fireworks and festivals. It is going to be a money losing veture. Period. I am still recovering from my 17% property tax bill shock. These current "Republicans" have adopted the Democrat values of tax and spend. Finally, if you feel inadequate about yourself, you should see someone.
JEN September 07, 2012 at 12:44 PM
You don't seem to care about the community at all. Here is the answer ...move to your beloved high crime area then you won't have to cry about your taxes.
Michael Agosta September 07, 2012 at 01:07 PM
I don't have to move anywhere. Or, I can move anywhere. That's my right. I can also criticize the inept council. I can express my opinions. That's also my right. You don't have to be 3rd generation Fair Lawn to voice concerns. If you're so concerned about persons of color from "across the bridge", get a permit and buy a gun. You are a pathetic racist. Maybe you should move to Alabama.
JEN September 07, 2012 at 02:38 PM
There ya go attacking, self serving and distorting the truth to paint your ugly picture, You are the one bring-up color and the N word. I did not say anything about color. I am talking about factual crime rates and eye wittnessed dangerous behavior. Well it just doesn't matter becasue you have nothing to contribute to the topic I have sted my concerns, not to worry Michael you will have plenty of opportunity to fight with me as I have done some checking and we have lots in common, I do know you and you do know me and my family. I will see you soon. TTYL
Jenne September 07, 2012 at 03:23 PM
Dear merciful god, I feel sorry for the people you nurse, then. Do you interrogate them about whether they stole your kid's bike before you treat them? I don't care for the Shop-Rite chain but go there for the loss leaders; I've never seen the river road store dirtier than any other shop-rite except when they are working on the escalator. In fact the floors are cleaner than the grocery I shop at in Glen Rock. For customer service, though, I prefer the Pathmark-- even though there are more people shopping there who don't seem to be from Fair Lawn. We live near the river too and we've never had anything stolen, however the kids in the neighborhood aren't the right age to be tempted by our stuff.
Jenne September 07, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Cosgrove, please don't try to spend more of the city's money for yet another boondoggle. Some years the fireworks make money, some years they don't. If you don't want to do the fireworks, then don't do them, but a three-day festival in July? Too expensive, and messy, thus costing more money to clean up. Festivals like that take staff, volunteers, and are risky if the weather turns bad. I don't see this as any improvement on the fireworks idea, and bad for traffic, the area, and possibly a money pit.
Jenne September 07, 2012 at 03:32 PM
Some of us care about the community enough to be appalled when people start with this parochialism and prejudice. What if your alleged 'friends' came to visit and a new neighbors accused them of casing the joint based on your postings here?
kristine September 07, 2012 at 03:37 PM
The same people who constantly bash people on this site are pathetic..it really takes away from hearing what the real people of Fairlawn feel....i think this is a great idea but i sure someone will attack me ...oh and use a false name!
Common Sense September 07, 2012 at 04:01 PM
cant agree with you more kristine. same people complaining everyday, im would like to know what these people have personally done to help make fair lawn a better place. if you dont like the council than vote for other people. better yet if you people think you can do a better job then run yourself instead of constantly posting on patch. i dont agree with everything the council does but they are taking up thier personal time to do what they think is in the best interest for FL. if you want change step up and run for council yourself. if you believe many residents share your views form a group and pick individuals to run for coucil to represent that group. theres a lot more productive ways to make changes than posting on patch all day long.
Common Sense September 07, 2012 at 04:03 PM
you people who complain on patch all day remind me of the fat slob who never played a sport in his life sitting in the stands at a sporting event telling the professional athlete he sucks.
Michael Agosta September 07, 2012 at 06:43 PM
Freedom of Speech. Guaranteed by the US Constitution. As long as there is no slander or defamation, anyone can say anything they want. This applies to Fair Lawn too.
Michael Agosta September 07, 2012 at 06:51 PM
JEN I have no plans to "fight" with you. If you plan on "fighting" with me, you might get disappointed. I do not recognize your initials, therefore, we cannot have that much in common. You do espouse the sentiments of many Fair Lawn people I have encountered regarding people who are different than you. It's a pity.
Deleted because of harassment September 08, 2012 at 01:48 AM
Freedom of speech is a dangerous thing in the hands of some people, by giving the rest of us ample warning of how screwed up their heads really are. And it's very clear in the comments here about the "dangers" of having an event that might attract the people from "nearby" - and they don't even need to don a white robe. I think an event, maybe not a three-day event, but an event that could have fireworks as the closing, might make money. Hackensack did this for years, with both name performers and games and various events all day long before the fireworks. Based upon the logistics of the town - and I can attest to the bad side of the Labor Day Street Fair in Rutherford, terrible parking - Memorial would be the most likely place for it, since we do not have a particular downtown like Park Ave. in Rutherford. Because the pool is now fenced, there is also a reasonable means of crowd control to allow for some admission events and some open and free events. But all of this disturbs me on another level, that we are now reduced to charging people to celebrate our country, as if it were a theme park. Fireworks should be free to all - and not the kind of thing that some have to avoid because of cost. I've paid for many years, but at some point, you are detering the very people who most need public events to celebrate once a year.
Tommy P September 08, 2012 at 02:58 AM
Freedom of speech is dangerous only the tyrants. No one needs a "public" event to celebrate. Fireworks are never free. With out the ability to speak your mind, you are not free. Celebrations do not require government taking money to coordinate them, people celebrat various things everyday. And yes someone has to PAY for those "free" fireworks. So while I would fight to the death for your right to say stupids things, how about a little respect and keep your hands out of my pockets.
Deleted because of harassment September 08, 2012 at 06:30 AM
And no one needs a public event to celebrate our own history. I guess there are too many fools who use their freedoms for nothing other than an attempt to cling to the notion of public good and public events the way a miser clings to weaslth. On the Planet of the Libertarians, the fine line between community and self-interest is pushed so far to the extreme that the marginally thin veil over social niceties like the freedoms of the people to hve a community in the first place is considered disposable and a threat. They used to consider such beliefs to be part of the lunitic fringe, but as the conservative center shifts, the lunatics seem to think they get to own the asylum and tell everyone else off. Sorry, but your freedom to be a self-centered, paranoid tightwad does not make you right, or even marginally reflective of the rest of society. Wrong is still wrong, no matter how you try to twist it. If the likes of you ever get controil of this country, the only celebrations left, will be the day you leave, and they won't be of pride in the community or the country, but of the relief of the vast majority that they can return to the centuries of what this country stood for beforehand.
Tommy P September 08, 2012 at 02:28 PM
You are forgetting to account for many self forming communities. Things like religious organizations, civic and social clubs exist in Fair Lawn. I can think of at least a dozen. The government should not get in the way of these private groups individually or collectively getting together to celebrate the 4th. Fireworks included. You may want to marginalized or call people who think like us lunatics or fringe, but we aren't the ones advocating plunder the masses for the entertainment of the few. Not wanting to be forced to spend money does not make us tightwads, on the contrary, people like you are the tightwads demanding we all pay for your wants so you don't have to. Slaves are told what to do. Free people choose what to do, which are you?
Christine Souza September 08, 2012 at 04:14 PM
Well, perhaps the citizens of Fair Lawn could vote on the prospect...

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