Kitchener / Waterloo Victoria Day long weekend: fireworks safety and facility closures

By: Kw Now Local News
| Published 05/20/2021

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Victoria Day long weekend: fireworks safety and facility closures

'Observe protocols now and we party next year...Defy them, and embrace the 4th WAVE.'

KITCHENER – The City of Kitchener, along with area municipalities across the Region of Waterloo, remind residents to keep safety top of mind this Victoria Day.

With the current lockdown and stay at home order in place, public firework displays will not be permitted, and public events have been cancelled across the region for the May long weekend (May 22-24). Fireworks cannot be set off in municipal parks, sports fields, laneways, or on school board property.

Additionally, residents are encouraged to exercise caution with private backyard firework displays. Residents are asked to celebrate with members of their household only and consider the possibility of celebrating the holiday in different ways this year. Please note that municipal by-law officers will be enforcing current public health restrictions.

Under the City of Kitchener Municipal Code, fireworks can only be set off on Victoria Day, Canada Day and Diwali, and the day immediately before and after these holidays. Fireworks cannot be sold to anyone under the age of 18.

Questions about fireworks can be directed to the Kitchener Fire Department at 519-741-2496 or the corporate contact centre at 519-741-2345. In the event of an emergency or dangerous situation, always call 911. For more information on fireworks safety, visit www.kitchener.ca/fireworkssafety.

FACILITY CLOSURES
Kitchener City Hall will be closed during the Victoria Day long weekend.

KITCHENER MARKET
The market remains open for the farmers’ market on Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Online shopping options are also available. The market will be closed as usual on Sunday, May 23 and Monday, May 24.

KITCHENER PUBLIC LIBRARY
All Kitchener Public Library locations will be closed on Monday, May 24.

POOLS
City pools will be closed for the Victoria Day long weekend.

COMMUNITY CENTRES
All community centres are closed for the Victoria Day long weekend.

THE AUD AND ARENAS
All arenas are closed for the Victoria Day long weekend.

BUDD PARK
Budd Park indoor soccer facility is currently closed.

City of Waterloo advises residents to limit fireworks celebrations this Victoria Day

The City of Waterloo, along with area municipalities across the region, remind residents to keep safety top of mind this Victoria Day.

To meet physical distancing guidelines, public firework displays will not be permitted and no public events will be held across the region for the May long weekend (May 22-24). Fireworks cannot be set off in municipal parks, sports fields, laneways, or on school board property.

Additionally, private backyard firework displays associated with the Victoria Day weekend are discouraged to respect physical distancing protocol, as well as the possibility of tying up emergency resources as well as the risks associated with gatherings. In addition, indoor and outdoor gatherings are not allowed, except with members of your household and one other person from outside of the household that lives alone.

Residents are asked to consider alternate plans and to keep celebrations to those within their household. Please note that municipal by-law officers will be enforcing current public health restrictions.

“Residents of the City of Waterloo have done a great job of adjusting to life through the pandemic, and we strongly urge everyone to make another accommodation to maintain personal and community safety,” said Fire Chief Richard Hepditch, Waterloo Fire Rescue. “We don’t want to put any additional pressure on the healthcare system or emergency responders, so rather than traditional fireworks, we are asking people to celebrate creatively – access age appropriate fireworks videos on YouTube, or use glow sticks, observe physical distancing and celebrate responsibly.”

If you’re looking for something fun to do on the long weekend – or any day, check out the city’s Waterloo at Home program.

In addition, all city facilities remain closed. The washroom at the Adult Recreation Centre remains open.

Anyone selling fireworks requires a license from the city in line with the municipal fireworks by-law. For details on firework by-laws and safety, please contact the city at 519-747-8785. View complete Fireworks By-law document below:

City of Kitchener Fireworks Safety Tips

Fireworks

You can set off fireworks on these days:

  • Victoria Day
  • Canada Day
  • Diwali
  • the day immediately before and after these holidays

If you want to set off fireworks on any other days, you need to apply for a permit.

You cannot set off fireworks on public property. Please follow our fireworks safety tips below to prevent serious injury.

Fireworks safety tips

Do not set off fireworks

  • on any street or highway
  • in any woodlot, forest, public trail or ballpark
  • in any city park without a permit
  • within 25 feet of any building or structure
  • in areas with dead undergrowth or trees
  • firecrackers (including cherry bombs and torpedoes) cannot be sold or set off in Kitchener

When setting off fireworks

  • only use fireworks outdoors
  • choose a clear, open area
  • check wind direction and speed
  • always have an adult present
  • have water handy
  • use eye protection and wear non-flammable clothing
  • read and follow directions
  • keep spectators at least 20 metres from launch area
  • wait 30 minutes after the end of the display and dispose of fireworks properly by soaking in water and then disposing in trash bin

Never

  • use homemade fireworks
  • give fireworks to small children
  • light more than one firework at a time, or relight “duds”
  • throw or point fireworks at other people
  • carry fireworks in your pocket
  • shoot fireworks in metal or glass containers