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Revelers in Oklahoma City started their Independence Day celebrations on Saturday with a fireworks display.
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The night skies of some American cities will be dark this Independence Day, as concerns about supply chain and staffing shortages, drought and wildfires lead to the cancellation of several fireworks displays across the country.

For some, this is the third year their shows have been canceled.

“The first two years were about the pandemic, and this year is about the supply chain,” said Adam Waltz, a spokesman for the city of Phoenix, where the three major fireworks displays were held. was cancelled. According to Mr. Waltz couldn’t promise the salesman product that usually gives the city fireworks.

“It’s just heartbreaking,” he said.

Other cities have canceled fireworks displays due to concerns about wildfires. Especially in the West, drought, hot, dry and windy weather conditions have already been prepared this summer. fast moving flames. As of Friday, 55 large forest fires have broken out in 11 states Rice fire in Nevada County, California.It has reportedly grown by more than 900 hectares since it began on Tuesday National Interagency Fire Center.

In Flagstaff, Arizona, about 150 miles north of Phoenix, city officials are more determined to plan a laser light show than to host a fireworks display, which they might have to cancel at the last minute if weather makes the show unsafe.

“We are dealing with dangerous conditions,” city spokeswoman Sarah Langley said. He said the city has not yet made any decisions on whether it will continue to replace fireworks with laser light shows in future years.

North Lake Tahoe, California, city ​​officials said they decided to replace their annual 4th of July fireworks show with drones due to fire danger as well as other environmental risks. (Various chemicals that can pollute are needed (making fireworks glasses big, loud, and colorful.)

credit…Elias Funez/The Union, via The Associated Press

is shown in Lake Don PedroAbout 50 miles east of Modesto, California, and ClaremontCalifornia, about 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles, has also been shut down due to the state’s drought.

This is the third consecutive year the show has been canceled in Claremont, city spokeswoman Melissa Vollaro said. He said it would take about 650,000 gallons of water to soak the area where the fireworks were released, which is not possible under current water restrictions. Instead, the city is planning a concert in the park, he said.

Other cities have canceled their shows due to staff shortages.

Cal Expo in Sacramento he said he had to concentrate staff and resources at the upcoming state fair and food festival and therefore could not host the Independence Day fireworks. Ocean City, Md., the authorities said two fireworks could not take place due to “lack of staff”. Minneapolis officials also said they had to turn off the screen because of construction at the local park as well as staffing issues.

In many other parts of the country, including New York, Independence Day celebrations continue as planned. For some, it’s the first time they’ve seen fireworks before the coronavirus pandemic.

“Everyone is ready to celebrate their independence from this virus,” said Julie L. Heckman, executive director. American Pyrotechnics Association.

Mrs. Heckman said that while some shows have been canceled, he still expects the number of professional fireworks displays across the country to be higher than in 2020 and 2021.

“Demand is at 110 percent of pre-pandemic levels,” he said. Heckman said he expects about 17,000 shows nationwide in the days surrounding Independence Day. (Before the coronavirus pandemic, he said there were about 16,000 shows across the country during that time.)

In cities with canceled shows, some residents plan to set off their own fireworks. Some types of consumer fireworks are legal in 49 states, as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, although individual states and cities may impose bans. Heckman. Consumer fireworks are banned in Massachusetts.

credit…Joshua Rashaad McFadden for The New York Times

Dennis Revell, a spokesman for TNT Fireworks, the nation’s largest distributor of consumer fireworks, said that with the vast majority of mass events canceled in 2020, TNT’s sales have grown significantly, both in terms of total sales and the number of them. people buy their products. “We’ve saved most of that for 2021,” he said. Revell said. But, he added: “It’s too early to predict what 2022 will look like.”

However, some smaller retailers have also experienced supply chain issues.

Eyvonne Hall, owner of Discount Fireworks in Brainerd, about 130 miles northwest of Minneapolis, said she’s been waiting more than a month for some orders that used to take about a week to arrive.

He said he called 12 different suppliers looking for his favorite fireworks in particular: Pure Fantasy. “They’re nice and colorful and the fountain goes up and people love it,” she said. Hall said. “It’s been slow this year,” he said. “I just hope that this situation will be resolved in the next few days.”

Another vendor in Queen Creek, about 40 miles southeast of Phoenix, where public fireworks displays have been suspended, said business has increased in part because of the cancellations.

“They’re really disappointed and it’s a shame, but they’re excited to try these new fountains at home,” Christian Valles, who runs the fireworks stand, said of his customers. He added, “they’re going to get a good show.”

Michael Lusiak, a fireworks enthusiast from Green Bay, about 115 miles north of Milwaukee, said that since 2020, he has been trying to increase the dazzling show that has no place on Independence Day. go to another.

The best moment, said the gentleman. Lusiak, a farmhand who hosts shows in his employer’s cornfield, is the grand finale. “I feel shockwaves in my chest and I know I’m making a statement that people across the nation will see or hear,” he said.

“All the cheers and jingles,” he added, “it’s one of the best feelings in the world.”


June 30, 2022

An earlier version of this article misstated the location of Queen Creek, Ariz. It’s southeast of Phoenix, not southwest.

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