The 40th anniversary of the annual Oak Bluffs fireworks display will be the biggest yet, and may be the last.

Fire chief John Rose confirmed Monday that this is the last year Black Entertainment Television (BET) will make a donation to the event. In 2012, BET Networks was the hero of the spectacle by making a sizable donation after the Oak Bluffs Firemen’s Civic Association was unable to support the display alone and nearly cancelled the show. The BET donations continued for three years and have relieved some of the major financial strain of the event.

“Every year is a struggle,” Chief Rose told the Gazette. “We try to come up with solutions that don’t put all the burden on the firemen.” He said they would have to go back to the drawing board, and the decision for next year’s fireworks will come down to a vote from the association.

“It’s a tradition in our town, we want to see it keep going” Chief Rose said. “People have the ability to donate and help out.”

Proceeds from the display go to help injured Oak Bluffs firefighters and EMTs.

Firemen’s civic association president James Maseda said the annual cost of the fireworks is $40,000 to $50,000, but he confirmed that in the face of insecurity about the future, extra money was invested in the display this year.

“This year we did up the price of the show about by half of what we usually spend,” Mr. Maseda said, adding: “Once we’re done and we know all the bills are paid, we earmark one third to a half of what we make to make a deposit on the next year’s show.”

Chief Rose could not say exactly what percentage of the budget the BET donation contributes and did not want to speculate, but he did say: “[It’s] going to be a lot to make up.”

Mr. Maseda agreed. “It’s going to be a burden on next year, we know [the donation] is not coming in on top of what we make,” he said.

In an email to the Gazette Thursday, Gina Stikes, a spokesman for BET, confirmed that this will be the last year the organization will help fund the fireworks.

“When we learned four years ago that the fireworks show on Martha’s Vineyard would be cancelled, BET Networks was proud to jump in and support the Oak Bluffs Firemen’s Civic Association that year. This year marks the fourth consecutive year we have helped to fund the fireworks and we look forward to a spectacular show this summer,” she wrote, adding: “BET’s primary focus for community outreach and support is centered around mentorship, health education and voter education. Although the fireworks show does not fall neatly into one of those categories, we were happy to contribute and show our support. After helping to fund the fireworks for three years beyond our original commitment, we very much hope that the other organizations who appreciate the Island as much as we do will show their support by stepping in and helping to carry on this tradition.”

Long considered a cornerstone event of late summer along with the Agricultural Fair and Illumination Night, the August show over Ocean Park is known for its spectacular pyrotechnics.

Oak Bluffs selectman Michael Santoro, who expressed shock at the thought of the tradition ending, said the association “made an announcement saying it was going to be a bigger show than last year,” in a meeting at the fire department last Wednesday.

Chief Rose agreed and promised, “It’s going to be quite a show.”

The fireworks show this year is scheduled for Friday, August 21.