Let there be fireworks!

by Susan O’Neill
The fact that other communities canceled their fireworks celebrations for the Fourth of July made Sugar Grove Lions Club President Bob Bohler more determined to make sure that the fireworks show went on at this year’s Corn Boil.

“I don’t know how we can’t have fireworks,” Bohler said. “Everybody is still really supportive of having them.”

Community businesses, such as Rich Harvest Farms, Engineering Enterprises, Inc. and other smaller groups, plus the village of Sugar Grove, the Corn Boil Committee and Sugar Grove Farmer’s Market shoppers, contributed to make this year’s fireworks possible, he explained.

“It should be even better than last year,” he said.

Fireworks Trivia

Fireworks originated in ancient China, approximately 2,000 years ago. The first fireworks were actually green bamboo thrown into fires to scare spirits away.

A Chinese monk named Li Tian is credited with the invention of firecrackers about 1,000 years ago. The Chinese people celebrate the invention of the firecracker every April 18 by offering sacrifices to Li Tian.

Firecrackers, both then and now, are thought to have the power to fend off evil spirits and ghosts that are frightened by the loud bangs. Firecrackers are used for such purposes today at most events such as births, deaths and birthdays. Chinese New Year is a particularly popular event that is celebrated with firecrackers to usher in the new year free of the evil spirits.

The first Independence Day fireworks celebration was in 1776, and was memorialized by then future President John Adams.
“The day (Independence Day) will be the most memorable in the history of America … It will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival … it ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade … bonfires and illuminations (fireworks) from one end of this continent to the other, from this day forward forevermore.”

In today’s public display shows, computers are used to control the launching of the fireworks and the synchronization of the aerial bursts with music.

Static electricity in synthetic clothing can ignite fireworks. The people who make fireworks wear cotton all the way down to their underwear.

Source: fireworks.com/safety, website of the Phantom Fireworks Company.