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SEATTLE-People will gather today to celebrate the $985,000 purchase of a 3.2-acre parcel that residents and city officials say adds much-needed greenspace to the southeast Seattle urban village of Columbia City.

The property, located at 37th Ave. S. and South Brandon St. was bought by the Seattle Parks and Recreation Department.

The property was once the home of Hitt Fireworks Company, which was involved in fireworks for the 1909 Yukon Pacific exposition and every major Fourth of July celebration in Seattle from 1918 to 1974. The company also provided special effects for films, including the burning of Atlanta scene in “Gone with the Wind.”

Powell Homes, the former owner of the property, planned to build housing on it. After the community noted the importance of this greenspace for the neighborhood and made a case for its preservation, Powell Homes expressed a willingness to sell it for that purpose. The joint efforts of the community, the City, King County, and the Cascade Land Conservancy led to the purchase of the land by Parks and Recreation for $985,000.

Saturday’s celebratory events, which will run from 10 am. To noon, include informal tours of the site.

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