DORR TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Several businesses are pulling their financial support from Dorr Township’s annual Fourth of July celebrations this year after owners say they can no longer sponsor the festival amid growing concerns over COVID-19.
But organizers say the holiday celebration isn’t canceled at all, it’ll just look a little bit different this year.
For the most part, the decades-long tradition will be the same for Brenda Wilson.
“I’m hoping that people will come out,” said festival-goer Wilson.
Wilson will be holding her same garage sale, eating the same food and sitting in the same heat.
“Ah, the breeze, that feels good,” said Wilson.
Michael DeVries, one of the festival organizers and Dorr Business Association board member, said everything isn’t as it seems.
“The main event, which is the parade, is canceled,” said DeVries.
DeVries said the parade was canceled to cut down on the spread of COVID-19. He also said the DBA is no longer sponsoring the celebration this year.
“There was too much liability involved,” said DeVries.
According to DeVries, the association pulled its name and sponsorship from the events because more than 100 people could take part in the festivities. The crowd size would be in defiance of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s order preventing large gatherings.
“It’s more of a legal issue,” said DeVries.
Since the DBA backed out, residents are stepping in.
“I have to move forward,” said Amanda Winters, Dorr resident.
Winters and other residents are getting together to hold multiple July Fourth events in the same general area.
“As a resident of Dorr, I am afraid of infecting the community, yes, but as a resident of Dorr, I also have the right to stand up and celebrate my independence,” said Winters.
Regardless of the turn-out, Wilson will be in her faithful spot, holding her same garage sale, eating the same food and sitting in the same heat, hoping for another breeze.
“That feels heavenly,” said Wilson.