Setting up for Red, White, and Boom - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Setting up for Red, White, and Boom

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Crews setting up for Red, White, and Boom. (Photo: WBOC) Crews setting up for Red, White, and Boom. (Photo: WBOC)

SALISBURY, Md. - Tuesday night the annual Red, White, and Boom fireworks show in will light up the night sky in Salisbury.  But prior to any fireworks being fired off, there is a lot of preparation that goes into ensuring the show goes off without a hitch.

The crew from Fireworks Extravaganza began setting up at the old mall location across from the Wicomico Youth and Civic Center around 10 a.m. Tuesday.  Almost 12 hours prior to the start of the show.  The work begins with unloading boxes of fireworks shells.  And then the dozens of canisters used to fire those shells.  That's when the planning of the show really begins.

"Design the show layout," said Michael Cornell, the lead shooter for Fireworks Extravaganza.  "Then what you do, you go and set everything in the boxes you want, and just start nailing everything together."

There is a lot of nailing to be done to ensure the boxes of canisters hold together during the show.  Once everything is secure, the fireworks shells get loaded into canisters with the fuse sticking out of the top.  The Red, White, and Boom show will have roughly 1,000 individual shells fired off plus some "cakes" as well.  "Cakes" are boxes of 36 to 100 shells of fireworks that have one fuse and fire off in a sequence.  

There are two ways to light fireworks.  Some companies use a laptop or electronic firing system.  The crew for the Salisbury show likes to get up close and personal in order to know each shell fires correctly.

"This show is a hand fired show.  We use 30 minute road flares and we go by and touch each individual shell and light them one by one," Cornell said.

Red, White, and Boom is the crew's fourth show in four days but they say it is all worth it.

"Knowing that everybody gets the entertainment they they do from coming out to a fireworks show and watching.  And a lot of people don't get to see the hard work that everybody goes into.  Hours on end here in the hot sun for the 20 to 25 minutes of entertainment," said Cornell.

The Red, White, and Boom show will begin Tuesday night with a special start to honor military families.  There will be a single blue star fired 600 feet into the air to honor families that currently have a member serving our country.  Ten seconds later there will be a single gold star for families who have lost someone while serving.  The fireworks show will begin a minute after the stars.

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