KABOOM CLOSING IN ON FUNDRAISING GOAL

kaboom-firecrackerFirecracker says the Kaboom Committee is half-way to its $275,000 funding goal. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

In a big change from this time a year ago, the KaBoom Committee is brimming with confidence as it readies the giant July 3 fireworks extravaganza in Red Bank.

Despite a still-sagging economy, sponsorships for this year’s three-day celebration have skyrocketed, and fundraising efforts have put the committee back in the black far earlier than last year, chairman Charles Moran has said.

With two days to go until the festival kicks off, the committee is making a final push to bring in more dollars to cover the $275,000 price tag — up from the normal $250,000 because of additional police presence — for the largest fireworks show in New Jersey, and one of the largest in the U.S.

“The committee is confident the fundraising goal will be met,” member Judy Musa said in an email.

Sure to help in meeting that goal will be the newly instituted charge for front-row viewing of the fireworks at Riverside Gardens Park.

The committee is capping entry to the park at 2,000 people, Musa said. At $7 per adult and $4 per child — and $10 and $5, respectively, the day of the show — the committee is anticipating it’ll add about $15,000 to its coffers.

The committee is also holding a slew of events to bring more money in. Last night, it hosted a kickoff party at The Downtown, and on Thursday night there will be a comedy night at Taste.

The committee also expects to raise money via the carnival, now in its second year, that will set up shop opposite Riverside Gardens Park on West Front Street.

And, as usual, Musa said, there will be an army of volunteers waving buckets to accept donations from visitors on the day of the fireworks show.