With the set to light up the sky over Three Mile Harbor on Saturday, the harbor has been temporarily closed for shellfishing harvesting this weekend.
The State Department of Environmental Conservation announced the closure on Thursday. The closure begins at sunrise on Saturday and continues through Wednesday, July 25.
"The closure is put in place annually during the busy festivities to protect public health from potentially contaminated shellfish associated with increased boating activity in shellfishing waters," the DEC said in a statement.
Hundreds of boats are expected in the harbor for a prime spot for the fireworks show. As always, boaters should use pump-out facilities to help preserve the waters. Three Mile Harbor is a No-Discharge Zone, which is a designated body of water where treated and untreated sewage are prohibited.
The temporary shellfish closure has occurred for the past 19 years on the day of the fireworks and for the four days following.
The operates a pump-out boat and the town harbormaster’s office on Gann Road in Springs has a self-serve facility, as well. There is no fee to use either, according to the DEC. To contact the town boat, use radio VHF channel 73.
The DEC expects to re-open the harbor for shellfishing on Thursday, July 26. But, if it rains, the fireworks will be moved to Sunday and that could push out the re-opening of the harbor.