ELYRIA — Less than one week ago, Dan Reaser and his two camouflage-wearing, crossbow-toting children were in Manitoba, Canada, bagging a black bear each.
The trip to the wilderness of Canada was a filming trip for the Reasers’ growing cable television show, “The Outdoor Option.”
Monday, they were Elyria to help bring back another kind of outdoor activity.
Reaser, daughter Shannon and son Danny donated $1,000 to the city’s fireworks campaign, which as of today has raised $32,500 toward a $45,000 goal. The Reasers presented Mayor Holly Brinda with the donation.
“We are not just about hunting and fishing,” Reaser said. “Fireworks get kids outside to enjoy the outdoors in a good, family event.”
Danny Reaser, 21, said he remembers visiting Finwood Estate at Christmas and was happy when Brinda found a way to bring it back during her administration. If the same can be done for the fireworks show, it would be great, he said.
“Fireworks are something we grew up watching at Cascade Park,” he said. “To be able to help bring this back is very special to us.”
The “Outdoor Option,” seen eight times each week over two cable channels, chronicles the trips of Reaser, owner of Elyria’s American Hood Systems, Danny and Shannon as they travel around the country to showcase the beauty of the outdoors while spending time with each other.
The trio came to City Hall wearing their “Outdoor Option” T-shirts.
Brinda said the barometer on the donation gauge is growing. She is confident the fireworks show, set for July 2 at West Park with a rain date of July 3, will take place.
“We know some companies are still doing things and haven’t turned in their contributions yet,” she said. “Truly, it’s going to be the city of Elyria who brings back the fireworks.”
The city last sponsored a fireworks show in 2008. It was the first and last year the city moved the festivities to West Park on Foster Avenue. Before that, the show was at Cascade Park.
Residents who would like to donate to the fund can do so on the city’s website. Checks payable to the City of Elyria Fireworks Fund can be mailed to 131 Court St., Elyria, OH 44035.
In addition, a spaghetti fundraiser is set for 5 to 8 p.m. June 3 at the Elyria Moose Lodge, 555 Ternes Ave. For more information, call (440) 326-1402.
Donation jars will be available at Ely Square and Washington Avenue Christian Church during the Memorial Day parade. Donations will be collected through Memorial Day.