The Future of July Fourth Celebrations: Tigard Leads with Drone Display Over Traditional Fireworks

Drone Light Shows Instead Fireworks

In a groundbreaking move, the city of Tigard, , is set to illuminate the summer sky not with the traditional bursts of fireworks, but with a choreographed display of 200 drones.

This decision marks a significant shift in how public celebrations are conducted, potentially setting a precedent for environmental consciousness and public safety without sacrificing spectacle. With the Fourth of July around the corner, Tigard's initiative has sparked a lively debate among its residents, with a majority expressing their preference for this innovative approach over conventional fireworks, according to The Valley Times.

A New Era of Public Displays

Tigard's transition to drone displays is not just a novel experiment; it represents the city's commitment to innovation and safety. The planned drone show, set to take place around Tigard High School, is not only a first for County but also a testament to the evolving nature of public celebrations. With 200 drones lighting up the night sky in a symphony of colors and patterns, the event promises to offer a unique experience that could redefine traditional festivities.

Public Opinion Favors Drone Show

Pamplin Media's unofficial survey sheds light on the community's perspective, revealing a strong inclination towards drone displays. Nearly 65% of respondents favored the idea, citing reduced fire hazards, noise pollution, and environmental impact as significant advantages.

These sentiments are echoed in the voices of the community, with one supporter highlighting the need for innovation: “Fireworks are ‘meh' for me… So, a change to drones would be something new for me. And, yes, quieter.”

The appeal of drone shows extends beyond novelty; it addresses genuine concerns related to noise, safety, and environmental health.

“Fireworks are bad for people with sensory processing disorders, people with PTSD, pets, birds, fire risk, and the environment,” one person commented. “They need to go.”

Supporters argue that drones offer a safer, more inclusive alternative that spares veterans, pets, and individuals with sensory processing disorders from the distress caused by traditional fireworks. The environmental argument is equally compelling, with many pointing out the adverse effects of fireworks on air quality and fire risk.

The Case for Tradition

Despite the strong support for drones, a segment of the population remains loyal to the traditional fireworks display. Critics of drone shows argue that they lack the visceral impact of fireworks, which offer a multi-sensory experience unparalleled by any light show. For them, fireworks embody tradition and evoke a sense of wonder and excitement that drones cannot replicate.

“Fireworks are cool. Drone lights are boring and can't be seen in certain conditions,” one detractor stated, emphasizing the unmatched beauty and emotional resonance of fireworks.

As Tigard prepares to host its inaugural drone display this Fourth of July, the city stands at the forefront of a potentially transformative shift in how we celebrate our national holiday. While the debate between tradition and innovation continues, the move towards drone displays highlights a growing awareness of the need for safer, more environmentally friendly, and inclusive public celebrations.

Regardless of one's stance, Tigard's drone show promises to be a spectacle that will, at the very least, spark conversation and perhaps even inspire other cities to explore alternatives to traditional fireworks. As we look to the sky this summer, we may witness not just a dazzling display of technology but the dawn of a new tradition.

Courtesy photo: Sky Elements Drones

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Haye Kesteloo
Haye Kesteloo

Haye Kesteloo is the Editor in Chief and Founder of, where he covers all drone-related news, DJI rumors and writes drone reviews, and, for all news related to electric vehicles. He is also a co-host of the PiXL Drone Show on YouTube and other podcast platforms. Haye can be reached at haye @ or @hayekesteloo.

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