We are blessed to live only 30 minutes away from the “Fireworks Capital of America”
“Every Fourth of July, millions of Americans watch fireworks shows designed in and shipped from a little-known town: New Castle, Pennsylvania.
“We are the fireworks capital of America. We’re fortunate to have that name,” said Stephen Vitale, the CEO of Pyrotecnico, a fireworks and special effects company headquartered in New Castle.
Italian immigrants began moving to the town in the late 1800s and early 1900s, working in tin factories by day and lighting up the skies at night with their innovative fireworks. Vitale is in the fourth generation to work at the company founded by his great-grandfather Constantino Vitale.
At the town’s economic peak, nine fireworks-related companies ran their operations from New Castle.
Despite fierce competition from China and elsewhere, the city remains home to two of the largest and oldest fireworks companies in America: Pyrotecnico and Zambelli Fireworks.
Pyrotecnico alone is coordinating fireworks displays in more than 750 cities over this July 4th holiday.
Technicians use computer programs to build second-by-second models of their shows, for holiday celebrations, sporting events and other occasions.” -ABC News
The benefit of living in such close proximity to “The Fireworks Capital of America” is the awesome firework show Pittsburghers get to enjoy year after year…truly one of the greatest in the world!
And this year took the cake!
Wow! What a show!
Every year we wade through the throngs of people into the heart of Pittsburgh to catch the show. And every year we are glad we did. It is always worth the effort, and the atmosphere and festivities found there in the heart of Pittsburgh can’t be beat.
This year when Grace got off work at 4:00 we headed downtown. While we usually park down at the point to see the show, this year we decided to park by Heinz field and watch the fireworks from the north side of the river.
We quickly found an empty spot of ground directly in front of the fireworks barge on the river. It was a perfect viewing location…front row seats to the greatest show in town.
We got settled, laying out our blanket and setting up our camp chairs.
We arrived a few hours early to enjoy the live music and people watch.
We packed snacks and board games and had fun playing our Escape Room game and Banana Split.
Ozzie was struggling a bit with big emotions. 4th of July is a holiday connected to some tough memories for him, so we packed some of his coping skill tools to help him make it through the evening. One tool that has proved to be especially therapeutic is a “taggie blanket.” After noticing many holes in his shirts from where he had torn the tags out of his shirts (to rub) I went searching for a blanket with tags sewn around the edge that he could get that same tactile calming sensation from without destroying his clothes. It has been an effective calming tool for him.
As we waited for the show to begin we had fun spending time as a family while enjoying the festive atmosphere of downtown Pittsburgh.
We had awesome seats for people watching, right along the main trail leading to the river. We even had a few friends from church pass by as we waited for the show to begin.
At 9:35 the show began…
And what a show it was!!
Hands down it was the best fireworks show I have ever seen.
And the grand finale rocked our world…literally!
The vibrations of the booms shook the very ground we were sitting on. It was incredible.
Amazing show, Pittsburgh!!
Then it was back through the crowds to the car and home by midnight.
A perfect 4th of July!