Faribault Fire Chief Dusty Dienst knows the 4th of July holiday wouldn't be the same without fireworks but he wants us to know what's legal for consumers to use and what's not legal.  First of all Dienst says, "Leave the display to the professionals."  He notes there are scores of fireworks events in the area including a great show people can watch at the Rice County Fairgrounds.

"Leaving it to the professionals lets you have all the thrills without the worry.  If you do still plan to have your own fireworks display, keep in mind what is legal in Minnesota," Dienst says, adding, "A few examples of what's legal are sparklers, cones and tubes that emit sparks and novelty items like snakes and party poppers."

A few examples of illegal fireworks are, "Firecrackers, bottle rockets, roman candles, mortars and shells."

The Faribault Fire Chief says simply put, "Anything that flies or explodes is illegal in Minnesota.  Explosive and aerial fireworks are prohibited for public sale, possession and use.  Consumer fireworks may not be used on public property across the state such  as in parks, on school grounds, roads and alleys."

Dienst says during summer celebrations his department has also seen the use of "sky lanterns" or "celebration lanterns".  These require heat from a candle to raise them skyward, where they blow out of site and land "wherever fate drops them.  These devices are also illegal in Minnesota because they pose a distinct fire and safety threat to buildings, homes, natural settings and livestock."

Dienst wants everyone to enjoy the holiday but says, "Most important, of course, is the safety of the Faribault community."

Fireworks at John Burch Park Cannon Falls in 2014. This pic reminds me of The Natural starring Robert Redford.- photo by Gordy Kosfeld