Nashville fireworks show continues as planned despite dry conditions
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - While some areas of Middle Tennessee received some much-needed rain on Sunday, other spots remain dry, which makes shooting off fireworks more dangerous.
Nashville has one of the largest fireworks shows in the country, with more than 20,000 pounds of fireworks set to be launched in the 32-minute display, and officials said it’s still going ahead as scheduled despite the fire risk.
Crews from Pyro Shows have been at Nissan Stadium the past couple days setting up for the big celebration. Pyro Shows president Landsen Hill said there will be plenty of fire extinguishers and firefighters on site in case embers spark a fire in the dry grass.
“The rain today has helped some places, but we don’t know that it has helped everywhere,” Hill said. “A lot of the differences between consumer grade fireworks and professional grade fireworks is the amount of paperwork and the amount of support we have from outside sources.”
Even with a few showers over the past couple of days, Hill said the fire risk is still higher than usual. Part of the reason they shoot the fireworks off from Nissan Stadium is because it is easier to control the potential dangers and keep people safely across the river in downtown.
Meanwhile, there has been a constant stream of people pulling into the Country Fireworks parking lot in Robertson County since it rained on Saturday and the burn ban in the area was lifted.
Alex Lachmandas said they have been struggling to keep the shelves stocked with the number of people coming into the store. He and other employees keep running to their supply trailer with a pickup truck to make sure they don’t sell out of any products.
“It’s been really crazy,” Lachmandas said about the estimated 1,500 customers that came to the store on Saturday and Sunday. “I think yesterday we had a really big downpour of rain. Around 1:30 in the afternoon the roads were really flooding here, and then as soon as it stopped cars pulled up immediately. We started selling out of things, we started restocking, so it’s been pretty busy.”
Lachmandas said his family went outside and did a happy dance in the rain on Saturday because they knew it would put an end to their slow selling season. He is hopeful they are able to make up for the loss of business during the drought and still meet their sales goals.
“There was a lot of fear out there, but for the most part people are still ok with shooting,” Lachmandas said. “I think now with the rain going off, people are a bit more at eased.”
Regular customers, like the Shutts family, drove more than an hour from Kentucky to stock up on fireworks on Sunday for their annual display.
Jennifer Shutts said her husband and daughter love their tradition and would have been very upset if the dry weather kept them from launching fireworks into the night sky on Independence Day.
“It’s memories,” Shutts said. “We take a lot of pictures and we just have a really good time. We’ve continued that throughout the years.”
Shutts said they have cut back on the number of fireworks they’re going to shoot off for safety reasons.
Hill said he also recommends being extra cautious in these dry conditions but wants everyone to still have fun on the Fourth of July.
“I think (consumer grade fireworks) are a great addition to celebrate the holiday,” Hill said. “But you do just need to use good diligence, care and common sense.”
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