Americans respect their freedom with patriotism and fireworks. But next July 4th, the skies will be calm in dozens of cities.
Salt Lake City has canceled its fireworks celebrations due to drought and wildfire concerns. Minneapolis and Sacramento, California, could not find enough workers. Phoenix was unable to get the fireworks due to shipping delays.
Despite the “enormous demand,” suppliers were able to fill only about 75% of the fireworks needed, according to American Pyrotechnic Association president Steve Bilkey.
“The West Coast is probably going to be hardest hit because those companies that depend on the Port of Los Angeles, a lot of those companies have been waiting two, three or four months for their inventory,” Belkey told CBS News.
Jim Souza’s fifth-generation family business, Pyro Spectaculars, has nearly gone out of business during two years of pandemic shutdowns and canceled shows. This year, his fireworks barely made it to the United States
“They should have been here in April, and they just arrived,” Souza told CBS News. “90 percent of the fireworks come from China and we’ve been really relying on the last few containers to get here.”
Some cities choose to light up the night sky with drones or lasers this holiday, but whether it’s fireworks or another alternative, organizers want viewers to enjoy the show.
“Come with family and friends, just celebrate, and look at the sky,” Souza said. “I’ll do the rest for you.”