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Maine: Fireworks on for July Fourth; COVID-19 cases decline

July 2, 2021 GMT

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Officials in Maine’s largest city said it will go forward with a “fireworks only” July Fourth celebration this weekend.

Portland holds the largest July Fourth celebration in the state, but the coronavirus pandemic canceled last year’s event. City officials said this year’s event will not include a musical performance or any ticketed events, but fireworks will happen on Sunday.

The lack of additional events is to avoid encouraging mass gatherings, city officials said. The fireworks themselves will take place on Eastern Promenade as usual.

City officials are encouraging residents to also view the fireworks from other locations such as East End Beach, Baxter Boulevard and Payson Park.

The event will necessitate numerous street closures. A rain date is planned for July 5 if needed.

In other pandemic news in Maine:

THE NUMBERS

Cases of the virus continued to fall in Maine.

The seven-day rolling average of daily new cases in Maine did not increase over the past two weeks, going from about 39 new cases per day on June 16 to about 24 new cases per day on June 30. The seven-day rolling average of daily deaths in Maine did not increase over the past two weeks, going from 1.57 deaths per day on June 16 to 0.43 deaths per day on June 30.

The AP is using data collected by Johns Hopkins University Center for Systems Science and Engineering to measure outbreak caseloads and deaths across the United States.

The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention said there have been more than 69,000 reported cases of the virus and 860 deaths in the state since the start of the pandemic. About 60% of the state’s population is fully vaccinated against the coronavirus.