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With help from Bacardi, fireworks return to Biltmore in Coral Gables

Fireworks will return to the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables this July 4, thanks to corporate sponsorships.

The fireworks were an annual event at the hotel from 1996 until 2006, when they were stopped due to city budget cuts and multimillion dollar renovations being done to the hotel.

“The event has been such a great event in the past, so it is inspiring to see our community step up to make this happen again,” said Cynthia Birdsill, economic sustainability director for the City.

The City Commission last year passed an ordinance allowing local companies to sponsor city events. This year’s fireworks will be the first corporate-sponsored city event since the law passed.

The event’s main sponsor is Bacardi U.S.A., which provided $50,000. Other sponsors include Del Monte Fresh Produce, the Biltmore Hotel, the University of Miami, The Collection, the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce, Greenberg Traurig LLC and The Miami Herald.

“The fireworks event brings the entire community together for a wonderful, patriotic, and fun-filled evening,” said Mayor Jim Cason said in a press release.

In past years, the Coral Gables’ July 4 fireworks attracted 20,000 to 35,000 people a year, making it one of the city’s most popular traditions.

This year’s event starts at 5 p.m., and the fireworks start at 9 p.m. The event will also include a concert by the Greater Miami Symphonic Band at 7 p.m., along with concessions, and patriotic mascots. Admission will be free, but food, soft drinks and cocktails will be available for purchase.

Free parking will be available at the city garage at 385 Andalusia Ave., a block from City Hall, 405 Biltmore Way, where a free shuttle bus will take visitors to the hotel. The bus also will stop at Coral Gables Youth Center, 405 University Drive, and the Ponce Garage in front of the Bank United Center at the University of Miami.