2021 fireworks for community

South Gulch Neighbors Light Up the Night with NYE Fireworks Show    

Thanks to a good-natured Fourth of July “Fireworks Duel” between neighbors just south of Wessington Springs, folks in and around Wessington Springs received a dazzling New Year’s Eve gift in the way of a spectacular fireworks show above South Gulch. 

“On the Fourth of July, we usually set off fireworks right after the firemen but didn’t end up doing it this year,” said Wessington Springs local Sandy Beckman, who resides with her husband Dennis atop a hill overlooking South Gulch. “Our neighbors across the way, Jacki and Jarrod Bultsma, lit a bunch of fireworks — so I texted her and said, ‘next year it’s on.’”

The Fourth of July “fireworks duel” continued to be discussed over the next few months. Then in October, Jacki texted Sandy, suggesting a different plan. 

“She said let’s send 2020 out of here with a bang and do New Year’s Eve fireworks instead,” Beckman explained. “We were worried about the dry conditions but it ended up working out great with snow on the ground and no wind.” 

News of the fireworks show quickly spread by word of mouth and on social media. When 7 p.m. rolled around on New Year’s Eve, not only the American Legion parking lot was full of vehicles with eager firework-watchers but traffic also overflowed into Foothills Truck Services. A seemingly endless line of cars and trucks headed to higher ground, parking atop Lookout Hill for a bird’s eye view of the fireworks show. 

And the exhibition did not disappoint. 

Giant rockets were blasted heavenwards for close to 30 minutes, filling the sky above Wessington Springs with brilliant light, a welcoming signal to a new year.

Beckman said that next year, the neighbors plan on joining forces and heading to the highest hill in South Gulch for a real show-stopper.

“So many people reached out to say thank you for doing this for the town, Beckman said. “It was so much fun and we really hope to keep the tradition going.”