Behind the Fireworks

By: Lindsey Ward Email
By: Lindsey Ward Email

July 3, 2007

Organizers have been working all day to set-up for Wednesday big fire works show. They've unloaded all of the shells and you will see over 1400 individual fireworks.

“It's a 25 or 30 minutes show but a lot of hours involved,” said Bob Schmidt, from Fireworks Production Inc.

After four months of planning the crews are in the final hours leading up to the big celebration.

“We shoot the show, we make sure everything is safe we tear everything down and then we're back the next morning to pack it all back on to the truck and get out of here,” Schmidt said.

Until they show up with the fireworks everything has to be in place and it's Bob's job to be ready

First they unload and zig-zag all the shells that hold explosives. They are divided up by size ranging from 4 inch mortars 10 inch the biggest in the show.

“They'll launch shells the size of bowling balls up to 900 feet,” said Schmidt.

He added the explosion from size 10 is so loud some of his crew doesn't want to shoot them.

“Really just kind of right now thinking of how to set it up so my crew is safe as we're shooting a show.”

Once all of Tuesday's set-up work is in place, workers nail all of the shells together to make sure they don't fall over and everyone is safe. While safety is Tuesday's focus, Wednesday, “we worry about what it looks like up in the sky,” said Schmidt.

It's almost a guaranteed hit.

“We've got over 600 shells in the grand finale alone, so it’s going to be unbelievable,” said Dave Philips, from save the fireworks foundation.

In the morning the professionals will be back to fill the tubes with the fireworks and if you're wondering the cost of the celebration will top off around $45,000.

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