Drier conditions create more viewing options for Thunder Over Louisville

By ANDREINA CENTLIVRE | WAVE 3 NEWS

One of the biggest fireworks shows in North America, Thunder Over Louisville, is just days away.

The sights, sounds and the spectacular fireworks bring about 600,000 people to the waterfront each year.

Getting more than a half million people in and out of downtown Louisville is easier said than done. Making sure everything runs smoothly and safely takes the help of 1,200 officers and two dozen agencies on both sides of the river.

MORE >> Your online guide to Thunder Over Louisville

Organizers say they’re prepared, and looking forward to better weather this year.

“We are thrilled that it is not quite as soggy as it was this time last year,” Ashley Smith, with Waterfront Development Corporation, said.

Smith said organizers will be able to use more of the park this year. Last year, flooding threatened some prime real estate on the Great Lawn.

Also an improvement this year, it’s safe to watch from the Ohio River.

“This year we can see our boat docks, which is key for us,” Jeffersonville Mayor Mike Moore said. “When you live alongside the Ohio you want to be around it.”

Moore is happy to donate thousands of dollars to charity this year. Typically, the city donates proceeds from boat slip sales. But last year that money was returned to the boaters who weren’t allowed on the water.

PREPARE FOR THUNDER

For those watching from land, Jeffersonville laid down new grass for crowds to gather on.

“All day Thunder is a fun experience,” Moore said. “It’s not just the nighttime fireworks.”

An airshow will entertain visitors during the day, and the fireworks go off at dark.

The fireworks will be great, according to KDF officials; with a new provider, they say you can expect new colors and designs.

Before the big show, Smith says you should take advantage of the park that wasn’t as welcoming 20 years ago.

“I encourage everyone to ride their bikes, park far away, walk in and then you can really run the length of the waterfront,” Smith said.

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