VLPRA prepares for Fourth of July show

VLPRA prepares for Fourth of July show

VALDOSTA, Ga. (WALB) - For Americans, Fourth of July is going to look a lot different this year.

Because of the coronavirus, many cities and states have decided to cancel their celebrations and close off public places to avoid crowds from gathering.

But South Georgia is not one of them.

The Valdosta Lowndes Parks and Recreation Authority (VLPRA) is gearing up for its big show tomorrow. About 2,000 fireworks are set to light up the sky.

VLPRA has been hosting the fireworks show every year for the Fourth of July.

Spokesperson Jessica Catlett said the fireworks are set up at an undisclosed location for everyone’s safety.

”Our show is unique because you can spread out a few miles to watch the show. So please make sure you social distance, make sure you stay at least six feet away from anyone who is not part of your household and enjoy the show with the folks that live with you,” said Catlett.

Every year the company Pyrotechnico is in charge of making the magic happen.

“Inside the shell, there is a mixture of different metals and that’s how they make the colors,” said Aaron Highsmith, lead technician for Pyrotechnico.

VLPRA preps for fireworks show for July 4.
VLPRA preps for fireworks show for July 4. (Source: WALB)
VLPRA preps for fireworks show for July 4.
VLPRA preps for fireworks show for July 4. (Source: WALB)

All fireworks are made by hand and are customized. Gunpowder mixed with different metals produce the colors and designs. They also range in size. Biggest one will open 300 feet across the sky and is shot 600 feet up.

They are all set off electronically. The crew has a panel that controls each group.

“To put these in the air and make a good show and not keep you waiting in a black sky, it’s about a 20 to 25-minute show. And we can make it go as fast as they want. We can cut it down to a 10-minute show, but our finale is going to be about a three minute finale,” said Highsmith.

Highsmith explained that the fireworks are all covered with black plastic after they are set up and ready, in order to protect them from the rain.

In case of rain, the show will be postponed to Sunday.

The show is set to begin sometime between 9:15 to 9:30 p.m.

The fireworks will be visible within two miles around the Valdosta Mall between exits 16 and 18 on 1-75. Just look west towards Brooks County.

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