Meridian, Miss. The shelves at Greg's Fireworks in Clarkdale are stocked with everything ranging from sparklers, to firecrackers, to big fireworks similar to ones seen at commercial shows. So far business has gotten off to a slow start, but owner Greg Chatham expects that change, especially on the Fourth.
"With the Fourth falling on a Thursday, and most people having to work (this week), sales are starting off kind of slow, but that's kind of normal. People usually wait until the day of."
The recent heavy rains have helped to keep trees and grass saturated, minimizing the forest and grass fire risk from fireworks, and even though rain is in the forecast, it may actually help boost business since people won't be as hesitant to shoot as they would in a dry environment.
"I think you guys are predicting some rain, and that's not necessarily a bad thing. That gives people a sense of security that it's safe to get out and shoot, and just have a good time."
The biggest thing Chatham wants to emphasize is fireworks safety, that includes never re-lighting a dud, using parental supervision, and keeping water close by among other things.
"Fireworks can be very safe. If you read and follow the instructions, you shouldn't have any problems, but I emphasize close adult supervision. It's a great family tradition. Get out with your kids, get some fireworks, and enjoy it."
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