’21 Mount Rushmore fireworks are up in the air

Capitol News Bureau

PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — The South Dakota Department of Tourism would like to have fireworks again at Mount Rushmore, but the show might not go on next year, according to Secretary Jim Hagen.

“I don’t know what the future holds,” Hagen told the state Tourism Board on Wednesday.

He praised the U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service and other federal, state and local partners who helped with the July 3 show this year.

“It was such a great collaborative team,” Hagen said.

The 2020 fireworks vendor, Pyro Spectaculars of Rialto, California, signed a contract on June 4 with Hagen and was paid $350,000. The company responded to a March 13 state request for proposals.

President Donald Trump visited the national memorial for the event. The fireworks display was the first there in 11 years.

“It was just a tremendous event,” deputy secretary Wanda Goodman said.

The department hosted a drawing for the 7,500 tickets available to the public. About 25,000 people requested about 125,000 tickets.

Goodman said the event generated an estimated $2 million in direct spending and $160,000 of tax revenue. She said the event drew about 25 million views, including more than 5 million from Fox News and more than 1 million on Facebook.

The department’s website saw a 872% increase in traffic July 3-4.

There was controversy beforehand but afterward reactions were positive, according to Goodman. “We were really happy with the feedback, and I don’t believe we had any complaints,” she said.

The board’s chairwoman, Kristi Wagner of Whitewood, said rain even held off until after the show.

“We don’t know what 2021 looks like yet,” Goodman acknowledged.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Continuing The Conversation
See Full Weather Forecast

Trending Stories

Don't Miss!

More Don't Miss