NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

July 4, 2014

Arthur impacts Fourth of July festivities

Salisbury moves beach events; Amesbury cancels breakfast

Today’s rainy weather has forced the shuffling and cancellation of scheduled July Fourth events in Salisbury and Amesbury.

Although Hurricane Arthur is not expected to hit the region directly, the potential for it to interact with a cold front moving east could bring up to 4-5 inches of rain today, according to Ray Whitley, an observer for the National Weather Service in Taunton.

“There’s a trough working its way through New England now,” said Whitley, a Salisbury resident. “If that moves on through, then the storm will probably be pushed further out to sea. That’s what I anticipate myself.”

In that case, rainfall will be less significant — as low as 1 inch, he said.

“We’ll just have to see how this plays out,” he said yesterday afternoon. “It’s kind of a wait-and-see at the moment.”

At the least, Whitley said that the hurricane will cause rough waters, which could affect the fireworks scheduled to be launched from a barge tomorrow night at Salisbury Beach.

“People are hearing that Friday and Saturday are the bad storm days, but once the storm goes through, the ocean is still very volatile,” Susan Pawlisheck, executive director of the Salisbury Beach Partnership, said yesterday afternoon. Organizers are keeping a close eye on weather alerts and will make a decision by noon today on the fireworks show, which is slated to be “11/2 times bigger than anything we’ve ever done,” Pawlisheck said.

Events originally set for today and tonight at the beach have been rescheduled to this weekend. The Pet Parade is now part of tomorrow’s festivities, stepping off at 5 p.m. and followed by a concert with popular band Entrain at 7 p.m.

The Island Beach Party Show will now be held Sunday afternoon from 2 to 5 p.m. Ralph Boragine of R.B. Entertainment said yesterday that he expects all of his performers — including Elvis tribute artist Ricky Andrade and singer Porsha Marie Funches — to make the new date for the family-friendly event.

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