Fireworks are back in Fullerton so play it safe!

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Below is a version of my guest column that ran today in the Fullerton Tribune:

As a kid, the Fourth of July ranked up there as my all-time favorite holiday. Not because of its historical significance or anything like that, but because of one special thing.

Fireworks.

That’s right, good old smoky, smelly, sparkly fireworks. When I was growing up, my brother and I couldn’t get enough of the Piccolo Petes or the smoke bombs or curly ash worms. Even the sparklers were fun, especially when lighting several at one time.

So now with kids of my own, especially a rascally young 9-year-old boy, it has always struck me as sad that fireworks were outlawed in practically every city in the county, including Fullerton.

But not any more. As most residents probably know, last fall Fullerton voters agreed to re-establish legal fireworks, bringing back a tradition that had been lost since 1990 and, well, that makes me happy.

Still, while the temptation to be immature and toss a spinning flower firework toward the neighbor’s car may be tough to resist, as a dad I have to assume a much wiser role.

So here’s what I will tell my kids.

  • Don’t light a sparkler and hand it to the little 3-year-old neighbor kid. Young children and fireworks don’t make a good, um, match.
  • Just like I tell them about their homework, read the instructions.
  • Animals don’t like fireworks. Don’t throw one at them. Same thing goes for dry grass.
  • If you see someone drinking beer and lighting fireworks, kindly excuse yourself and walk away.
  • Keep the water hose handy, just in case that guy with the beer does something stupid.

All kidding aside, fireworks offer another big benefit for families in Fullerton – namely, cold, hard cash.

Nonprofit organizations stand to raise thousands upon thousands of dollars from fireworks sales. A short list of those who took part in a lottery to win the right to sell fireworks include the Knights of Columbus, Fullerton College Women’s Soccer, St. Paul Lutheran Church and my personal favorite, Golden Hill Little League.

Golden Hill Little League board member Eric Bollin was born and raised in Fullerton and he is happy to see this tradition return.

“Fullerton had fireworks a few years ago and it was taken away from us and it’s finally coming back,” Bollin said.

He said it has been estimated that the league could make anywhere between $15,000 and $20,000 in fireworks sales.

“We hope it’s good for the league,” he said of the fireworks sale, which will go on until 9 p.m. tonight.

Let’s hope it’s good for the city too and will restore a tradition that was lost in Fullerton for nearly a quarter of a century.

For more safety tips and a list of nonprofit organizations and where you can purchase fireworks go to the city’s website here

 

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