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Pyrotechnicians Prepare for Star Spangled Springfield


SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — Star Spangled Springfield promises to dazzle thousands with a spectacular fireworks display over the Memorial Bridge Friday night. But planning a show of this magnitude doesn’t happen overnight.

“Those 14 minutes, that bridge is going to be rocking,” says David VanBuskirk, chief pyrotechnician for Grucci Fireworks. “I think the people are really going to like it.”

That’s the promise from the mastermind behind Star Spangled Springfield. VanBuskirk has been planning the city’s annual 4th of July fireworks show for 16 years now, and each year he tries to outdo himself.

“My guys worked really hard, it was very hot out here yesterday, very humid, but we lugged it out and we got it done and we’re just waiting for the bridge to close so we can go up and load it up,” says VanBuskirk.

The launch point for the show — the Memorial Bridge — will close to pedestrian and vehicle traffic at 11 p.m. Thursday, at which point VanBuskirk and his crew will move the fireworks from their current location along West Columbus Avenue. Then, it’s time to scramble.

The pyrotechnicians will have have less than 24 hours to get everything in place for the big show, and they’ll likely have some rain to contend with.

“We arranged a trailer so we can work under the pop-ups so nothing gets wet,” says VanBuskirk. “We have stuff on the ground that’s completely covered, so nothing will get wet.”

The rain date for the show is Saturday, but VanBuskirk is confident he’ll be setting off the fireworks Friday, as planned.

“There’s a few surprises in there,” says VanBuskirk. “It should be pretty good.”

To find out if there are any schedule changes due to rain, click here.

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