Red, White and Boom goes off without a hitch despite flooding

ROCK ISLAND, Illinois-- The fireworks went off without a hitch Wednesday, July 3 for Red, White and Boom. Organizers had to make some changes because of flooding in the Quad Cities.

Normally the enormous fireworks show would be shot off barges on the Mississippi River. Not this year. The flood backed up river traffic and most barges are now being used.

The staging area was moved to the Rock Island Arsenal. Crews worked over three days, getting ready to set off thousands of fireworks.

"The minutes leading up to the show are pretty nerve-wracking," said Nick Pravecek lead technician at Melrose Pyrotechnics. "I get butterflies in my stomach."

Organizers say despite the flood, this year's show was bigger and better than some in the past. By shooting off the fireworks from Arsenal Island rather than barges, pyrotechnics could use larger shells that fly higher into the sky.

"This is awesome," Margaret Rhinehart says. "Just how long it goes, the colors, the water, everything. The atmosphere around, the music, everything. It's wonderful."

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