July 4 fireworks: What to know for Independence Day

Orbit Fireworks on Highway 45 South has the latest types of legal fireworks.Bill Livingston is happy to tell customers about what makes the biggest boom and the prettiest show.From the large artillery packages to finger snaps, there are plenty of fireworks for everyone to have a safe and fun independence Day celebration. (Photo by Donna Summerall, DTL)
By: 
DONNA SUMMERALL
Staff Writer

Orbit Fireworks, owned by Deborah Turman, has eight northeast Mississippi locations, including one in West Point on Highway 45 South. The tent is open now from 10 a.m. - 10 p.m. until Tuesday, July 4, when it will be open even later.

From sparklers, roman candles, rockets and artillery type fireworks, it just isn't the Fourth of July without gorgeous displays to celebrate America's independence from British rule.

According to city ordinances, fireworks cannot be used within the West Point city limits. Bill Livingston has been with Orbit Fireworks for more than nine years. When it comes to fireworks safety, he is an expert.

“Above everything, we want people to be safe using our fireworks,” Livingston said. “The instructions are plainly written on each firework. Follow the directions and there shouldn't be any problems. People who think drinking and shooting fireworks is a good idea are usually the ones who get hurt. There are instructions on the packages for a reason. ”

Livingston said the best sellers are the artillery packages. These are the big guns that shoot the huge, beautiful displays that are professional grade.

“The laws have changed,” Livingston said. “The limit has been raised on some of the fireworks from 350 grams to 500 grams. This is the second year we have been able to offer these. We are so excited to offer these types of fireworks in the cakes. They are awesome. They have changed from the 1 - inch tube to the 2 - inch tube, like in the artillery shots. No one will be disappointed with these firework displays.”

The new Dominator line of fireworks are highly recommended by Livingston. He said this is a company that is leading the way in firework technology.

“The technology used in creating fireworks has come a long way,” Livingston said. “There are spectacular effects that can be used for home displays that rival any professional ones from years past. We have some amazing packages right here on the highway.”

Fireworks are a time honored tradition during Fourth of July celebrations, but residents of West Point and Clay County should remember to use caution when handling fireworks. Residents are reminded that there is an ordinance against popping fireworks within the city limits of West Point, but there are no regulations against lighting up the Independence Day sky in the county. There has been plenty of rain in this area and there are no firework bans in place.

“We are always happy to come to West Point,,” Livingston said. “Business has been brisk, but we know Tuesday will be our big day.

Customers may want to think about coming early to make sure we have everything they want.”

Fireworks aficionados are finding creative ways to remember which types of the small explosives work best for them.

“We have a customer who comes in every year,” Livingston said. “He takes a picture of the the ones he really likes and keeps them in his phone. He comes in the next time with the pictures in his phone of what he liked previously. He always buys a few new items and keeps photos of them for the next time if he liked them. It's a great way to let us know exactly what you want.”

Livingston said he was happy to give people tips on the best and safest way to use fireworks.

He said people were wasting their time by asking about “behind the counter” fireworks.

"Everything we sell are legal, if you are looking for M-80s, you will not find them here,” Livingston said. “We run a fun and safe family operation. There are always rumors of stands selling illegal fireworks, but there are none here.”

There are lots of new artillery type fireworks, cake fireworks, rockets, roman candles, bottle rockets, chasers, firecrackers, sparklers and finger snaps.

“We have something for everyone and are happy to announce Jumping Jacks are back,” Livingston said. “We have kid-friendly packs for ages 10 and up. We have the individual chasers, spinners, smoke bombs and sparklers in every color. Then you get into the more complex fireworks. We have a huge variety to chose from. All it takes is a little common sense to have a safe, fun and happy Fourth of July with fireworks.”

Orbit Fireworks is a locally company out of Columbus. For more information, like Orbit Fireworks on Facebook.

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