There can be no doubt that the people of south central Utah love the United States of America. 

One needs only to look at the annual Independence Day celebrations, which are a signature tradition of the region. They draw hundreds of people home each year so they can experience a hometown Fourth of July.

While parades, games, races and revelries on area parks are a lot of fun, they are also the result of a great deal of work by volunteers.

There are few areas that put forth the effort in their Fourth of July, as do those in south central Utah. There are places for nearly everyone to participate in the celebration, including a children’s parade, a general parade, activities on the city park and one of the largest fireworks displays to light up the skies of the region. This year was no exception, as the celebration seemed to fire on all cylinders.

In a world where people don’t always agree with what their government is doing, it may seem difficult to muster much enthusiasm for the festivities. However, organizers, volunteers and participants deserve thanks for all the effort they spent uniting communities in celebration of a country founded on the basis that people are free to disagree.

However, through the month of July, it’s common for people to keep celebrating between July 4 and 24, which is Pioneer Day in the state of Utah. While using fireworks is integral to Independence Day and Pioneer Day celebrations, they are also capable of ruining celebrations by causing injuries and property damage when misused.

The federal government, under the Federal Hazardous Substances Act, prohibits the sale of the most dangerous types of fireworks to consumers. These banned fireworks include large reloadable mortar shells, cherry bombs, aerial bombs, M-80 salutes and larger firecrackers containing more than two grains of powder. Also banned are mail-order kits designed to build these fireworks, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Fireworks are only legal three days before and three days after July 4 and July 24. For a list of fireworks approved for use in the state of Utah, log onto firemarshal.utah.gov.

Beyond safety concerns, people also should consider when they use fireworks. 

Anyone lighting fireworks off after 10 p.m., is being a nuisance to their neighbors.

By showing consideration of others, and following safe practices, celebration through July can be both safe and fun for everyone.

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