Fireworks sales off to slow start - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Fireworks sales off to slow start

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The fuse has once again been lit on fireworks sales in Iowa.

Friday marked the start of the second summer for the legal sale of exploding fireworks in Iowa.

But many cities will not allow residents to set them off within city limits, including Waterloo, Cedar Falls, Cedar Rapids, North Liberty, Iowa City and Dubuque.

Firework stand owners say it is too early to tell what the bans will do to firework sales.

The first week of sales was much slower than last year.

 "Maybe in part because of some of the bans, but also, last year, people just went crazy because it was the first year fireworks were legal," said Crossroads Fireworks co-owner Matt Reisetter.

Crossroads Fireworks, off of San Marnan Drive in Waterloo, was one of the first stores open in the area last year.

Not far away on Highway 63 in downtown, SNT Fireworks says location is playing a big role in sales so far this year.

"Once people started to go to work on Monday; traveling back-and-forth across the bridge on Mullan Avenue, I think it has helped out a lot. They are starting to see it, and word is getting out that Waterloo may have a ban on fireworks, but we can still buy them," said Bill Fratzke, SNT Fireworks.

Fratzke says they expect most people will find a place to shoot them off.

"A friend that lives outside in the county. Just go outside in the county and go have fun," said Fratzke.

But back at Crossroads Fireworks, Reisetter says there should be a better balance within city limits.

"Actually pretty short-sided on the part of local city councils that have enforced them," said Reisetter. 

Both stores say the individual bans and limits from city-to-city are causing confusion among people looking to set fireworks off this Fourth of July.

Because each municipality was allowed to make their own ordinance on the firework use, the best thing people can do is call their city hall to find out the exact restriction in their area.

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