Cole said of the criticism of downtown, "It's a bit frustrating, because I live here year-round. What's unfortunate to me is, some people take a couple horrific but isolated incidents and define what downtown Baltimore is. To me, that's not a fair representation. People continue to move here because it's safe, enjoyable and vibrant. I'm raising three kids in the middle of downtown, and it's a thoroughly enjoyable experience."
Federal Hill Neighborhood Association President Ryan Hada said Baltimore has a record of providing a "great event, well-managed and well-organized" for the Fourth of July.