Depoe Bay City Councilors Tuesday evening learned that the prospects of continuing the town’s 3rd of July fireworks at Pirate’s Cove don’t look good, at least at that location. Preliminary indications from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is that the fireworks are disturbing and reducing the number of nesting birds in the area which constitutes a violation of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. The USFWS says they are bound by law to stop activities that cause such problems. But they add that there are other sites where the city can shoot off the rocket’s red glare. One suggestion is the Fogarty Creek area, about a mile north of the current fireworks launching site. However a USFWS spokesman said the city earlier rebuffed their suggestion. City Councilor Barbara Leff claims the site isn’t safe. USFW officials told News Lincoln County that they will deliver a formal response to the city this friday, March 23rd, along with copies to the news media.
City officials say the event is very popular with tourists and local residents and provides a major economic benefit to Depoe Bay merchants and other business owners. City officials say they’re firing a letter off to Oregon’s two U.S. Senators as well as local House Representative Kurt Schrader in an effort to regain permission to launch their fireworks from Pirate’s Cove. They said the city is being told that if they don’t book an event soon, all the fireworks vendors will be booked solid and Depoe Bay will miss their chance to hit their 20th fireworks anniversary.