Local News

More To Fireworks Displays Than Meets The Eye

Posted July 5, 2001

— Across the country, people will be oohing and ahhing at fireworks shows Wednesday night, but how are the displays actually set up?

Wake Forest held their fireworks show Tuesday night, and like all fireworks shows, there is more to it than, well, meets the eye. It takes five hours to prepare a fireworks show, and only 30 minutes to blow it all up.

"(People will say), you know I love the colors and the aerials. Please do more of those. And someone else will come by and say please do more explosions," says says event coordinator Gale Parker.

Randy Robinson loves shooting the cannons, large and small.

"These get all the loud bangs. It gets people's hearts to stop. They get to go 'ahhhhh.' It'll shoot blue in the air and have red tails that flutter away from it. When it goes up it'll have a circumference of about 80 feet you'll see in the air," he says.

The Wake Forest display was fired by remote switches.

"When it hits position one, all five of these will fire at the same time ... it's a controlled fire," says Robinson.

The show is so dangerous, the shooters never get to watch fireworks explode.

"We're not allowed to look up. We always have to keep our head down," says crew member Summer Timberlake.

But their goal is to create a scene that lifts your head and dazzles your eyes.

"I like the end. The oohs and the aaahhhs. You know, the people clapping. Because I know I've done my job then," says Timberlake.

The best view of a fireworks show is not from the actual firing site. In fact, the best view of the fireworks is from a quarter of a mile or more away.

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