Labor Day Lake Tahoe fireworks will go on
The Labor Day fireworks show will go on in September. The South Lake Tahoe Tourism Improvement District voted on Friday to fund the $65,000 needed to keep the show. “You can put that back on your calendars,” said Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority Executive Director Carol Chaplin. The LTVA and the Tahoe Douglas Visitors Authority ” which allocates money for the American CenturyChampionship golf tournament and the July 4 fireworks ” usually pay for the Labor Day fireworks, but because of budget constraints, the fireworks went unfunded. The TID used contingency funds to keep the fireworks going, said Jerry Bindel, TID board chairman. “We’re doing this to keep people employed, and attract visitors to drive up here,” Bindel said. The South Lake Tahoe Lodging Association also unanimously approved the effort to fund the fireworks on Thursday, Bindel said. The Labor Day fireworks are one of the biggest events for the lodging community, Bindel said. It falls short of the July 4 fireworks and the celebrity golf tournament. Bindel said the plan is to market the Labor Day fireworks to draw more visitors up to the lake, and to create a weekend event to entice people to stay for three nights. The LTVA had gone to the city in April to ask for $60,000 to keep the Labor Day fireworks. The city council voted to give the LTVA $15,000 ” $10,000 for the Lake in the Sky Air Show and $5,000 for the Masters Track Meet, but nothing for the fireworks. The TID is also trying to acquire more marketing funds. Bindel said the TID Board unanimously approved an increase in fees that lodging properties will charge to their guests, and would like to bring the issue before the City Council for final approval. The fee increase would provide more money to market the area to tourists. The fees would increase from $2 to $3 a night for hotel and motels, and from $3 to $4.50 per night for vacation rentals. Bindel said the increase would take effect by the fall. Other summer events coming up include the Masters Track Meet, an event at the end of May for people older than 30 ; geocaching, high-tech treasure hunt with GPS devices in June; and the Lake Tahoe Marathon in September. The LTVA will not host a summer kickoff this year because of its small budget. Last year’s summer kickoff was a mid-June street festival on Highway 50 in the casino corridor.