Desert Living
“Safe and Sane” Fireworks

pageaz_2When I was 12 years old my mom took our family to visit relatives in Indiana.  My grandparents had a 144-acre farm there with a fresh vegetable garden, surrounded by fields filled with corn stalks and a big lake that we couldn’t swim in because it was swampy.   One of my favorite memories of this trip was the 4th of July firework show that my uncles put on for us.  In the Midwest you can buy all types of fireworks “safe and sane” or not.   I remember the Roman Candles throwing glowing balls of fire into the air, rockets that exploded into colorful lights as my cousins and I ran around with our sparklers under the lit up sky.   It was a true American 4th of July.

As a transplant to the desert I was not aware that fireworks were legal in some desert cities. Cathedral City, Indio, Coachella, Blythe and Desert Hot Springs allow the sale and use of fireworks that are considered “Safe and Sane.”   This definition applies to fireworks that don’t leave the ground when ignited and have a seal of approval from the California Fire Marshall.

This year I’ll be watching another 12-year old enjoy a 4th of July firework show here in Indio, CA.  The fireworks that he and his Dad will ignite won’t be like those my uncles shot in the Midwest.  They will be “Safe and Sane.”   There are no cornfields here, but we bought some corn at the market.  We will BBQ burgers and enjoy the day.  As darkness descends we will start our own mini fireworks show in our own backyard.

No matter where you are or how old you may be, the 4th of July is a special holiday.  It is a date that reminds us what being American really means.  It is a day to celebrate our freedom and independence.

I wish you all a “Safe and Sane” 4th of July. Enjoy the holiday weekend!

Fireworks stands will be open today through July 4. Today: Noon – 10 p.m. Monday – July 4: 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. in the cities where fireworks are legal (Indio, Desert Hot Springs, Coachella, Blythe and Cathedral City).