Bring the noise

By M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal


It’s nearly “Boom!” time in Northeast Mississippi, as fireworks stands open for business in anticipation of July 4.
“There really is new stuff, cool stuff,” said Betty Kelley, manager of Big Daddy’s fireworks stand just north of the Peppertown exit off Highway 78. “There are not enough hours in the day or the night to see them all, but I’m getting there. My neighbors are loving my new job.”
This is Kelley’s first season in charge of a stand. She’s not sure what to expect from customers, but she’s a longtime fan of fireworks.
“You think back to when you were a kid and you remember them,” she said. “I think everybody’s that way.”
There are about 300 different colorfully wrapped items available at the stand. Some are familiar, like bottle rockets, fire crackers, Roman candles and smoke bombs.
For a price, newer types of fireworks rival what a professional display can do. Packages come with a reusable tube that can shoot a variety of fireworks into the sky.
The cost depends on how many “breaks” the explosion has. A break is a burst of sparks, and different types offer two, four or even six breaks.
“They come in different colors,” Kelley said, “and some of them crackle, you know, like the professional ones do with the sparks coming down.”
You can clean out your piggy bank or take out a loan because there are types of fireworks for all price levels.
Tupelo and other Northeast Mississippi municipalities have ordinances that ban fireworks within city limits. Police will respond to complaints and violators can be cited.
If you want to make a little noise – or a lot – on July 4, find a safe spot and use your common sense.
scott.morris@journalinc.com

Safety Tips
• Use fireworks outdoors only.

• Obey local laws.

• Have hose or bucket of water handy.

• Use fireworks as intended. Don’t alter or combine them.

• Never re-light a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes then soak it.

• Use common sense. Spectators should keep a safe distance, and the
shooter should wear safety glasses.

• Alcohol and fireworks do not mix. Have a “designated shooter.”

• Only those over 12 should handle sparklers of any type.

• Do not use homemade fireworks.

SOURCE: NATIONAL COUNCIL ON FIREWORKS SAFETY

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