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The Loch Raven Village Associates is asking for donations from individuals and surrounding communities to help with costs of the July 4 fireworks display it puts on every year. Here, people watch from the grounds of Loch Raven Technical Academy.
The Loch Raven Village Associates is asking for donations from individuals and surrounding communities to help with costs of the July 4 fireworks display it puts on every year. Here, people watch from the grounds of Loch Raven Technical Academy. (File photo)

The Associates of Loch Raven Village are ramping up the fundraising for the annual Fourth of July fireworks display.

"Last year we were scrambling to raise funds," said Jason Garber, president of the community association. This year, just as they were preparing to launch this year's fundraising campaign, news broke that Baltimore County officials were planning to build a road salt storage dome at Loch Raven Technical Academy, on the field where the fireworks are launched.

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"The salt dome would have taken the field and it would have been necessary to cancel the fireworks," Garber said.

Now that controversy is behind them. The County Council announced April 20 that the salt dome would not be located on that site.

"Saving that field shows the spirit of the community," Garber said. "Our efforts showed the value of the fireworks to this area."

Just as they did for the first time last year, the ALRV has turned to the Internet this year to raise funds for the Fourth of July fireworks display.

"We got a decent response out of it," Garber said.

A page has been set up on the crowdsourcing website, gofundme.com, which had raised $200 as of May 18. One of the donors was the Campus Hills Community Association, which gave $150.

Garber said they count on support from a number of Towson area neighborhood associations, as well as the Greater Towson Council of Community Associations. Local politicians, including Del. Steve Lafferty and County Council members David Marks and Cathy Bevins, distribute the community association's fundraising flyer.

"There are very few places in the county where a neighborhood association has to bear the brunt of paying for a fireworks display," said Mike Ertel, president of the Greater Towson Council of Community Associations. "We are trying to get all the community associations in our organization at least to contribute to defray the costs for Loch Raven Village."

In the long run, Ertel said, he'd like to see a community-centered fundraising effort that takes the burden off one neighborhood.

"We really don't want to see this go away," he said.

The community association, which took over fundraising from the Loch Raven Foundation in 2014, must raise approximately $10,500.

The half-hour fireworks show, set for about 9 p.m. on July 4, has always been a community-sponsored event. They were initially held on Luskins Hill, with the Loch Raven Business Association and the Loch Raven Kiwanis paying some $3,000 to $4,000 for them.

When the Luskin's store closed, the fireworks were moved to what is now Loch Raven Technical Academy. The Associates took over organizing the event in 2004 and fundraising last year.

In addition to requests for donations, the community association plans to hold a raffle later this spring. Plans are also in the works for a fundraising night at Twisted Pizza, a restaurant located at 8712 Loch Raven Blvd. A portion of the night's proceeds will be donated to the fireworks funds, Garber said. Details for both events have not yet been finalized.

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The ALRV will accept funds in more traditional ways, too.

On the Fourth of July, association members will, as is traditional, walk around during the fireworks, seeking donations from the audience, which is estimated to number about 3,000.

Checks may be made payable to Associates of Loch Raven Village, Inc., and sent to ALRV, P.O. Box 9721, Loch Raven, MD 21284-9721.

For more information about the fireworks, as well as the raffle and Twisted Pizza night, go to the community's Facebook page: facebook.com/LochRavenVillage.

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