▶️ Some residents excited, others concerned about expected 4th of July crowds

By ANYSSA BOHANAN
CENTRAL OREGON DAILY

From the Oregon coast to Ashland, Fourth of July firework displays are being cancelled because of COVID-19 concerns.

But in Bend, the show will go on from the top of Pilot Butte.

Businesses like the Bunk and Brew Hostel are expecting to see lots of guests next weekend.

“We’ve seen a big uptick in travel here,” Frankie Maduzia, co-owner of the hostel, said. “You know you still have Portland, Seattle and California all in phase one just barely and those guys are all just flooding into Central Oregon. We’re at 65 to 75% occupancy for Fourth of July.”

And Maduzia hopes to see that number rise.

“I hope we get full,” said Maduzia. “It’s good for business.”

While some residents are excited to see the tradition continue, there’s also concern from some about the amount of people coming into town.

“I don’t think we need to congregate during COVID and we should be not negligent and considerate of others,” one Bend resident said.

“I just don’t think there should be any large gatherings inside or outside at this point,” another Bend resident said.

“I think the fireworks are great for the city of Bend, but people need to be socially distanced,” one Bend resident said. “I’m worried about people coming into town period because I don’t think they’re paying attention.”

While some people are concerned, the upcoming weekend is an exciting step towards business as usual for others.

“Moving forward it would be nice to start events and stuff and get back to some normality,” Maduzia said.

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