TIPS FOR CREATING A PROFESSIONAL GRADE FIREWORK SHOW

firework popping in night sky

Most professional firework shows last less than a half-hour, yet can take weeks, even months, to plan and create. While you may not have months to plan your next big firework show or a giant budget, you can still create a fantastic display that will impress your spectators. Whether you are planning a show for a family wedding or a community event, there are creative ways to make your firework display get the oohs and awes of a professional-grade show. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Plan your viewing and firing area. Knowing the size of the area where you will be firing your show is the first information you need to gather. Why? Because the size and type of fireworks you buy could be impacted by the area. You will need an area with no obstructions to fire, without combustible material. You also need to be able to place your firing area with a buffer zone between you and the spectators for their safety.
  • Know your budget. Whether you have a few thousand dollars or a few hundred to spend on your show, you need to plan your firework purchases based on your budget. The finale is the biggest expenditure – a good finale will be close to half of your budget. Once you decide what you have to spend, you can pick up your arsenal at one of our Alamo Firework stores or order online.
  • Plan for safety. Any professional show has a large amount of effort geared toward safety. You will need a flat, non-combustible surface for your firing area. You can have more than one firing station; using sheets of plywood can work well. You also need safety gear for those in the firing area, fire extinguishers, water buckets and first aid kits.
  • Blending effects. The trick to creating a professional-grade firework show is using different effects to make a dynamic event. Like a well-choreographed orchestra, there should be loud, exciting points, dramatic pauses and a blend of different components. For example, combining some short fountains with aerials can blend altitudes for a wonderful effect. Quiet moments of pure color followed by a fast-paced barrage of shells can keep your spectators entertained.
  • Make your finale spectacular. The last big event is what everyone is waiting for – it is better to have a shorter show with a memorable finale, than a long show without a dramatic ending. Put the largest amount of effort into your finale as well as your budget.

If this is your first time preparing a large firework show, let us help you make some great choices for your show. You can view many of our fireworks on our website so you know exactly what each one will look like during your show. You can also come into one of our Alamo Firework locations and talk to one of our friendly team members for personal assistance. We want to help you make your first big show great!

DALLAS FIREWORKS FANS: NEED A PLACE TO SHOOT?

While Alamo isn’t operating a Shooter’s Site in Dallas this year, we do know some other people that are:

Devil’s Bowl Speedway.  On Lawson Rd between HWY 80 and I-20.   Admission for each is $10 per car.  (After you shop at our stand in Sunnyvale here, they can give you directions!)

THE COUNTRY’S BEST FIREWORK CRUISES

Like fireworks, but don’t like the big crowds and obstructed views that come with them? Get away from it all with firework cruises. These boat rides let you coast away from the crowds and into the still seclusion of the surrounding lake, river, or ocean. If this sounds ideal, check out the following best firework cruises across the country.

fireworks show near cruise ship

Disney Fireworks Cruise

Of course, no list of firework boat tours would be complete without a mention of the Disney Fireworks Cruise. This magnificent tour on the water takes you away from sweaty masses of people and instead lets you roam freely on a boat as you watch either the IllumiNations: Reflections of the Earth or Happily Ever After fireworks displays.

Whether you choose to go to Epcot or Magic Kingdom, you’ll get to experience the synchronized music and visual displays that land-goers enjoy. These cruises also include a wide variety of snacks and beverages to satiate your hunger. Since the private boats are small and can fit between eight to 18 guests, they’re perfect for gathering up the whole family and enjoying the night together.

New York City Fireworks Cruise

New York City is one of the best places in the world to catch fireworks on the Fourth of July, so it should be no surprise that they also have some of the best chances to catch fireworks on a boat. For example, the cruise from Circle-Line Sightseeing gives you front-row access to the Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular.

As the world above you explodes in vibrant color, you’ll get to rock out to the beats of a live DJ. When you tire of dancing and need an energy boost, snack on the July 4th themed buffet, beer, and wine included in the cost. The cruise starts at Pier 83, continues to the Statue of Liberty, and then navigates down the East River so you’ll have a perfect view of the Brooklyn Bridge as the sky turns to dazzling rainbows.

Baltimore Fireworks Cruises

Baltimore is a city filled with history, but it’s also a place that knows how to put on a killer fireworks show. In 2018, you’ll have the option of several firework boat tours to catch the stars cracking overhead, starting with the Baltimore Independence Day Fireworks Cruise from Cruises on the Bay.

This cruise leaves from the Baltimore Finger Piers and takes you on a three-hour journey around Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. Light snacks are included in your ticket, and there will be a full bar available if you get thirsty.

You can also catch the Charm City New Year’s Eve Fireworks Cruise on December 31, which also leaves from the Finger Piers. This time, you’ll take the Raven, and you’ll be able to watch the fireworks above you from the open-top deck.

These are just a few of the best ways to see fireworks on a boat throughout the country. You’ll also want to look into cruises at Navy Pier in Chicago, cruises on the bay in San Diego, and cruises through Boston. Until then, satisfy yourself at home with our large selection of fireworks.

FIREWORK-INSPIRED FOODS

Summer is just around the corner, which means that firework-heavy holidays like the Fourth of July are quickly approaching. In addition to stocking up on all the fireworks you’ll need, you should also begin to consider the foods you’ll serve. Why not make things festive this year by serving food with flare? Here are a few fireworks-worthy food recipes to make your celebration a bit more merry.

Firework Hot Dogs

If you’re looking for some fireworks-worthy food for appetizers, look no further than these firecracker hot dogs. They’re also easy, meaning you can whip them up quickly and so you’ll have more time for creating your own fireworks show.

Skewer the hot dogs, then wrap a chunk of breadstick dough around the dog in a spiral. Make sure to leave some gaps in between the spiral. Bake the hot dogs at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. While that’s happening, cut out star-shaped cheese bites using a cookie cutter. Attach these to the end of the skewer once the hot dogs come out of the oven.

Rocket Sandwiches

For the main entree, consider this food with flare – rocket sandwiches. Begin by using a cupcake plunger to cut a circle of bread, leaving it inside. Next, cut a circle of lunch meat, letting it sit on top of the bread inside the plunger. Continue repeating this process until the plunger is full, finishing with a final slice of bread.

Push a skewer into the plunger, making sure it makes it through all the layers to the bottom. Push out the sandwich from the plunger and add a decorative piece of triangle fruit or vegetable at the top of the skewer to serve as the nose.

Fireworks-Inspired Cake

This fireworks-themed one is sure to be a hit at your party. Just take white cake mix and divide the batter into three separate bowls. Dye one blue, one red, and leave the other alone. Layer the batters in the pan for a tiered look, or create a marble effect by using a knife to swirl them after you’ve poured them in.

Once the cake is baked, ice it white and use gel food coloring to create the fireworks. Make lines of dots from the center of the cake to the edge, and use a brush to smear them into the strokes of fireworks. The finished result will look like your cake is caught mid-explosion.

Pop Rocks Cocktails

You know the delicious candy that pops in your mouth? Well, it turns out that Pop Rocks also makes a killer, fireworks-inspired cocktail. This drink makes a great addition to the rest of the unique food options you have planned.

Mix fresh cranberry juice, pineapple juice, coconut rum, and blue curaçao in a shaker. When you’re finished, rim the glass with Pop Rocks, and you’ll have a drink that explodes with every sip. Top with soda water for even more bubbles.

Finish Your Party in Style

You know what pairs great with all of this unique food? Actual fireworks. Make sure you’re stocked up on everything you’ll need for your fireworks display by stopping by one of our locations today.

DRONES & FIREWORKS: THE PERFECT DYNAMIC DUO?

gold and green firework

For years, fireworks were the only way to light up the sky. The brilliant reds, yellows, greens, and blues of these exploding rockets have entertained people for nearly two millennia. Now, however, there is new technology taking to the skies in the form of drones. In particular, swarm drones can create fantastic displays synchronized to music. With both drones and retail fireworks in your arsenal, you can create a show that viewers will never forget.

Capture Photos Like Never Before

In the past, taking a photo of fireworks with your smartphone was one of the best ways to capture the amazing sights, other than investing in a DSLR. Now, however, drones are here to take the place of your outdated phone camera.

Drone footage of fireworks display can capture a completely new angle. The camera will watch from the sky as rockets explode on all sides, gently illuminating the happy faces and tall buildings below.

Often, filmmakers are sending their drones up into the sky to capture footage of Fourth of July celebrations. In fact, one such video on YouTube currently has over 16,000,000 views and counting. The incredible footage shows spark trails heading right at the camera, sometimes literally getting inside the explosion just as it erupts.

What Else Can Drones Do?

Drones are good for more than just capturing footage. Many companies are starting to use them in actual displays as well. Swarm drones let pilots control dozens or hundreds of drones at the same time, eliminating the need for heavy manpower during these shows.

One example of this is the Shooting Star drone by Intel, which flies information automatically. In fact, Intel just flew some at Disney World and Coachella to show off their prowess.

So far, Intel, Project Wing, Disney, and Qualcomm are some of the only companies to utilize this technology. However, as science keeps advancing, there’s no doubt that many other companies will follow suit.

Be Sure to Follow All Laws in Your Area

While combining drones and fireworks is technically legal, the government does frown upon it. The Federal Aviation Administration has not banned flying drones through fireworks shows, but they tweeted out a warning against it.

However, there are several other federal laws you’ll need to keep in mind if you plan on capturing drone footage of fireworks display. For one, you’re not allowed to fly over crowds of people, which can be tricky if the fireworks are being shot above an audience. You also always need to have your drone within sight, so you can’t send it up into the clouds. Finally, if you’re filming for commercial use, you’ll need to get special permission to do so when the sun sets.

Check the local laws in your area, as many states and municipalities set their own rules.

Capture Your Next Fireworks Show Like Never Before

Even if you don’t have a drone to capture your next show, make sure you have the retail fireworks you need to impress. Browse our catalog and don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions on which fireworks will work best.

VALENTINE’S DAY AND FIREWORKS: HOW TO BECOME A ROMANCE LEGEND

Wish Fountain

Let the sparks fly!

Romance is about the unexpected, the excitement, the adventure, and what could better encompass all those things than fireworks! Instead of the tired old traditional Valentine’s Day fare, step outside the box and give your sweetheart something they don’t expect, something that expresses your love in a very creative, fun way. We thought we’d share some unique ideas for Valentine’s Day. Enjoy!

Let her make a wish at the fountain.

There is something so beautiful and quintessentially elegant about a fountain firework. They have the captivating flash of a sparkler, but the height and drama of a Roman candle. They are more low key that other fireworks, but that only adds to the breathtaking display. Arrange for some dreamy music and the two of you can share a romantic dance by the light of the sparkling fountain. She’ll remember it (and you) forever.

Give her cupcake some sparkle.

A cupcake with a sparkler has long been a sweet, romantic gesture for everything from birthdays to graduations – and they are usually of the plain, silver variety. What you may not realize is that sparklers come in a variety of colors. But if you really want to impress, these heart shaped sparklers will never disappoint! You can’t get more romantic than a sizzling heart atop a sweet, baked treat.

Give her flowers.

Flowers are a Valentine’s Day favorite, but when you give her these flowers you can bet it will be a first. Ground fireworks give a lovely display that is intimate enough to keep it just between the two of you. The Large Camelia Flower is a ground flower that gives off a stunning array of red and gold sparks. There’s also the Crackling Ground Bloom Flower, also a spinner with sparks of green, red and gold, along with delightful crackles. Now those are flowers she won’t forget!

Make her Valentine’s Day pop.

Add some pop to a toast or just delight her with a confetti-filled surprise by bringing a few party poppers to your romantic dinner. All you have to do is pull the string and colorful streamers and confetti are released with a pop! These are perfectly safe for indoor use, no fire needed. They’re even safe for children, with adult supervision, of course.

Show some sparkle with long exposure photography.

Set your camera’s shutter speed to long exposure and use a sparkler to “draw” a heart or “write” a sentiment. The camera will capture everything that happens while the shutter is open and what you will get is a somewhat blurred trail of the light source – wherever you directed it. If you “draw” a heart with a sparkler, then that is what the final picture will show. You can use the photo to make your own soppy, romantic Valentine’s Day card for a creative, fun, original twist.

Of course, a romantic fireworks display is always a hit too and we have everything you need to make it happen. Why not show us some love this Valentine’s Day while giving your sweetheart a Valentine’s Day she won’t soon forget. At Alamo Fireworks, we have a wide selection of romance ready fireworks that will ignite her passion and light her fire. You’ll be a romance legend for sure!

THE BIGGEST INTERNATIONAL FIREWORKS COMPETITIONS

For travel junkies who love watching fireworks, did you know you could combine the two? In cities around the world, international fireworks competitions are held, showcasing the talent of professional pyrotechnics teams. Today, we’re sharing the top four fireworks competitions around the world, where it’s held, when to go and what to expect.

1. Montreal International Fireworks Festival

  • When: Usually from July to August

Trip Savvy dubbed this fireworks competition “the largest competition of its kind in the world”. It’s held right on the Jacques-Cartier Bridge and at 10 p.m., prepare for a 30-minute spectacular you won’t forget. This year’s fireworks competition celebrated Montreal’s 375th anniversary and each night featured a country, something uncommon compared to past years.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eM0bal25C6w

2. International Fireworks Competition

  • When: In May and September

On five different nights in Hanover, teams from around the world compete by presenting a 25-minute fireworks display that includes a four-minute compulsory section. The shows are designed around the beautiful Royal Gardens of Herrenhausen, which was named the “Best Historic Garden in Europe.” At these competitions, you’ll find live music, cabaret, dance and drama!

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CI4ouL9aT6g

Feeling inspired to set up your own fireworks display? Shop our featured fireworks for your next big celebration!

3. The Philippine International Pyromusical Competition

  • When: February to March

This competition is also known as the World Pyro Olympics. Set in the scenic Manila Bay, watch fireworks professionals put on a show of bright colors, bursts and artistry. The shows are performed at the front of the SM Mall of Asia, the 11th largest shopping mall in the world.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oyZ42t-jxZI

4. Da Nang International Fireworks Festival

  • When: April to June

Staying in the southeast region of Asia, head over to Da Nang, Vietnam for their international fireworks festival. For five nights, see 11 different fireworks displays and many additional events to accompany the festival. The displays are judged by concept design, emotional impact, music, variety of colors and much more.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_c8WfwpWUM

Going to any one of these fireworks competitions would be an once-in-a-lifetime experience. Maybe it gave you some inspiration for travel plans for the future!

At Alamo Fireworks, we want you to have the best selection of fireworks at the greatest prices. Click here to see if we have any specials or coupons, or you can sign up by email and get them delivered straight to your inbox.

WHY FIREWORKS ARE THE PERFECT PARTY FAVOR FOR YOUR GENDER REVEAL PARTY

Gender reveal parties are becoming more and more popular among expectant parents with creative ways to announce to family and friends whether your little bundle of joy is a boy or a girl.

But why use typical streamers and balloons when you can really make a statement with fireworks? While it may seem a bit unconventional, fireworks not only add a “wow” factor to your celebration, but also provide a beautiful and memorable backdrop to your special announcement.

At Alamo Fireworks, we offer a beautiful selection of gender reveal fireworks, sparklers and other novelties, ranging from vibrant plumes of soft, pink clouds to beautiful blue cascades of stars that light up the sky – it’s the perfect way to add some sparkle to your celebration.

So if you’re looking for an unusual way to take your ordinary gender reveal or baby shower to absolutely extraordinary, fireworks are a great way to make an unforgettable impression and create a lifetime of memories for your little one. After all, how many other kids do you know that can say they were celebrated with a fireworks display?

Alamo Fireworks would love to celebrate this new chapter in your life, and with a wide color selection of fireworks and firecrackers, we make sure your gender reveal party goes off with a bang – literally! Visit one of our convenient San Antonio locations or visit Alamo Fireworks online, today.

FOURTH OF JULY FAMILY-FRIENDLY AND FUN FIREWORKS

women holding sparklers in front of American flag

While the Declaration of Independence was signed in 1776, the first Independence Day celebration didn’t happen until a year later. Since then, fireworks have become America’s favorite Independence Day party favor – a longstanding Fourth of July tradition for many family celebrations across the nation.

With more than 300 years of this deeply embedded tradition, today, America’s birthday party wouldn’t be the same without fireworks. And with Fourth of July rapidly approaching, it’s important to remember fireworks and firecrackers must always be handled responsibly and safely – especially around children.

Taking a few precautionary fireworks safety tips will ensure fun for the entire family, ensuring your Fourth of July celebration sizzles – not fizzles!

1. Never leave children unsupervised around fireworks, firecrackers and sparklers.

While fireworks look beautiful, they’re also very hot and could burn a young child. Make sure an adult is always around to light firecrackers and supervise the little ones.

2. Don’t hold fireworks or firecrackers in your hand.

Set a good example for the kiddos – always light fireworks on the ground. For sparklers, make sure to always keep a safe distance away from your face and the sparkler.

3. Never light more than one firework or firecracker at a time.

Avoid combining or lighting multiple fireworks – always follow the directions.

4. Never relight a dud.

If a firecracker fails to pop or do what it’s supposed to do, DO NOT attempt to relight. Wait 20 minutes and place in a bucket of water.

5. Keep a bucket of water or hose close by.

In case of an accident or other mishap, keep water close by. Before throwing used fireworks in the garbage, make sure to soak or douse them with water.

This Fourth of July, get the best deals on fireworks fun at Alamo Fireworks.

Alamo Fireworks has the largest selection of the most popular brand fireworks, firecrackers, sparklers, fountains, rockets, roman candles and more. With locations conveniently located in San Antonio, Dallas, Houston, El Paso, Corpus Christi, Laredo and Victoria, Alamo Fireworks is your only place for fireworks!

CINCO DE MAYO CELEBRATIONS

cinco de mayo celebration with pinata

The summer shower of fiery festivities is approaching, but Texans are blessed with advanced access to our favorite aerial entertainment thanks to Cinco de Mayo. But before we start lighting up the night with brilliant blues, greens and sparkles, what exactly are we celebrating, and why do we get to celebrate it?

Over 150 years ago, the new nation of Mexico faced external, existential threats. Following independence in 1821, after a decade of conflict, Mexico became embroiled in the Mexican-American War and the Reform War, a civil conflict between conservatives and liberals of the time. With back-to-back conflicts, the nation found itself deeply indebted to the reigning European powers, Britain, Spain and France. With the country’s treasury nearly bankrupt, then-Mexican President Benito Juárez declared a suspension of all foreign debt payments for two years to stabilize the country.

Naturally, this decision enflamed the European powers who sought to take action against the Mexican government and forcibly recover their debts. Britain and Spain negotiated and reached an agreement with the Mexican government, but France, under the rule of Napoleon III, opted to employ the opportunity to establish an empire in Mexico that favored French interests.

In 1861, well-trained and equipped French forces landed and seized Veracruz, driving the president and his government to retreat. Following their quick victory, the French advanced on Mexico City but came upon fierce resistance from the smaller and poorly equipped Mexican national army. In an awe-inspiring moment, the inferior Mexican armed forces led a decisive victory against the French, considered the premier army of the world at the time.

Following their incredible victory at the Battle of Puebla, the date was designated to commemorate a landmark victory that likely shaped the destinies of the Americas. Indeed, historian Justo Sierra posited that had the French been victorious they likely would have aided the Confederacy in the American Civil War and ultimately altered U.S. history, as we know it.

Today in the U.S., Cinco de Mayo has a grand significance as it has come to be associated with celebration of Mexican-American culture. In Mexico, it is commemorated largely through military parades. Due to Texas’ shared history with Mexico and the heavy influence of Mexican culture, Texans can start celebrating early with access to fireworks before the summer celebrations starting with Cinco de Mayo.

Texans have a shortened firework-selling season during this time. Although it should be noted that it’s not statewide! Fireworks may be sold at locations “not more than 100 miles from the Texas-Mexico border” and only in counties where commissioners have approved the sale of fireworks during the period.

If you’re eager to start the season early, plan a road trip to the southern border and stock up with the best selection from Alamo Fireworks. Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in style with the beautiful, fiery festivities.