Organizing for the annual 4th of July celebration has begun, and organizers are taking into account the funds necessary to pay for it all.Even though many of the events were cancelled during last year's celebration after the Schuylkill River flooded in late June, a few events that cost a lot of money were held, said Bill Krause, one of the event organizers.

"We had the Teen Idol contest at the high school, there was a parade on Fourth of July morning and the Patriotic Run was also on July 4th," Krause said. "All those things cost us money. Everything we got in cost us money."

Krause said the parade cost about $8,000, with many of the bands and other items in the parade being paid for their performance.

"The parade was a money-loser," Krause said. "[But] it's money well-spent."

Additionally, even though the fireworks were one of the many things that were cancelled last year, they too ended up costing money. Krause said a contract with the company that was going to put on the fireworks display ended up costing the Fourth of July Committee $5,000, despite there being no show.

One of the most detrimental aspects of the 2006 celebration was that no money was brought in because the vendors did not have a place to sell their wares when the activities in Memorial Park were cancelled.

"We spent 13 grand and didn't take any money in," Krause said.

Krause said the whole idea of the annual celebration, which is paid for 100 percent by sponsorships and donations from the community, came about to bring people together for some inexpensive family fun.

"We've been doing this for 28 years," Krause said. "At that time gas prices were sky high. The idea was to put on some kind of celebration for the people so they didn't have to spend money on gas, if they could get it, to go someplace else."

With the ever-increasing gas prices nowadays, Krause said it's as important now to have the celebration as it was back when it started, and the only way to make it happen is to support the fundraisers for it.

As is tradition, the Fourth of July Queen contestants will be holding various fundraisers up until the Fourth of July celebration, which will be held in Memorial Park again this year.

Anyone who wants to contribute to the Fourth of July fund can send a check payable to the Fourth of July Committee to Mary Ann Peters, C/O Pottstown Fourth of July Committee P.O. Box 779, Beech and Penn Streets, Pottstown, PA 19464.

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