Last year, as many people gathered intimately for more restricted and safer Fourth of July celebrations in America, people expressed their disdain for the excessive amount of fireworks that sounded off before and well after the holiday. The holiday to celebrate the “independence” of Americans in the United States is often commemorated with an excessive amount of fireworks from backyard functions to large scale events like the Macy’s Day parade. The question is: how much money is spent on fireworks each Independence Day?
Shockingly enough, the fireworks industry racked in an impressive amount of $2 billion in 2020 hitting a record high. Though this may be a surprise to most since the world was “closed,” the amount of unemployment, PPP loans and desire for a sense of normalcy may have justified the surge in sales.
According to Go Banking Rates, industry experts project that the supply of fireworks for the Independence Day holiday will be down about 30% from 2020. The U.S. imported nearly 255 million pounds of fireworks in 2020, which leaves an expected 178.5 million pounds of fireworks left for this year’s activities. That is the equivalent of about $1.4 billion in sales in comparison to last year’s record breaking $2 billion.
Missouri-based fireworks company Premier Pyrotechnics records show that a typical small town community fireworks show lasting 10 to 20 minutes costs between $2,000 and $7,000. Fireworks pyromuiscals, which offer massive amounts of fireworks synchronized to music by using computers, costs $1,000 to $2,000 per minute, usually exceeding $20,000.
Macy’s hosts one of the largest fireworks shows in America. It is actually the most iconic Fourth of July festivity. The broadcast spans for a total of two hours live on NBC to millions of homes across the nation and it includes an A list cast of musicians and entertainers. This year the show began on June 29 and will run for several nights across all five of New York City’s boroughs to its peak on Independence Day at the Empire State Building. The perennial tradition of 44 years reportedly costs approximately $6 million.
In addition to the cost of the fireworks itself, almost all venues require that each show has a legitimate general liability insurance sufficient enough to cover claims. Several states also set their own requirements for insurance coverage. The minimum coverage for large-scale fireworks shows similar to Macy’s ridiculously large display costs a whopping $5 million according to WalletHub reports.
According to federal financial records obtained by TMZ, the aerial fireworks display at the National Mall in Washington D.C. put on by the National Park Service costs roughly $278,500. TMZ reports the same fireworks company was paid $270,000 in 2018, and later got an increase of $320,000 in 2019 when former President Trump wanted to make the show an “even bigger extravaganza.” As Americans felt the shift due to the pandemic, last year the event was moved to Mount Rushmore where a company called Pyro Spectaculars received $350,000 to put on the annual fireworks display.
This year a fireworks company called Garden State Fireworks returned for the Fourth of July experience in Washington, DC. Garden State Fireworks also provided the vibe for President Biden’s inauguration earlier this year. The total cost for the event in DC is likely more than the $280,000 figure mentioned above, considering expenses like security, logistics and outdoor restrooms.
In 2021, Americans will notice a shortage in fireworks. Whereas people could easily purchase fireworks anywhere from their local Walmart parking lot to the side of a deserted road, this year fireworks lovers will see a drop in access to the explosive devices. Many fireworks distributors attribute the national shortage to shipping container delays that are stuck off the coast of California, in Egypt and China, where most of the fireworks are made.
Naturally, the delay has resulted in fewer fireworks for Americans and even higher prices. The prices are up nationally as high as 30% these year and it is expected that stands and super centers will run out this year far sooner than usual.
So if you haven’t made your holiday purchase, you and the children may have to watch your neighbor’s displays who arrived early to the fireworks stand.
Certainly, the 2021 fireworks demand won’t stop the show. Expect to hear light shows across America well into the Fall, as people fire them off all night long. What better way to celebrate freedom in the states than to annoy your neighbor with fireworks simply because you can. Happy Independence Day, America!