Fireworks 2012!

Photo by PoPville flickr user ianseanlivingston

Thanks to all who sent in/uploaded such awesome photos!

Photo by PoPville flickr user jesscecilia

Lots more awesome photos after the jump.

Photo by PoPville flickr user theupper

Photo by PoPville flickr user caroline.angelo

Photo by PoPville flickr user afagen

Photo by PoPville flickr user theupper

Photo by PoPville flickr user thisisbossi

Photo by PoPville flickr user randomduck

15 Comment

  • Lovely pictures! I still haven’t totally gotten the hang of fireworks photography.

  • note to self: Make friends with someone who owns a boat by July 4, 2013.

  • Oh randomduck, how did you get that amazing shot? It was like you had your face (camera’s eye) right in the firework! What a fantastic shot! Seriously, though, how did you get that shot?

    • Probably either a zoom lens or some post-production cropping.

      • Do you think post-production cropping could get you that close up?

        • Depends on a lot of factors– how many megapixels you’re shooting with, ISO, aperture, how close you were to begin with– but I’m sure you could. I’ve cropped the hell out of photos before with good results.

  • At the risk of taking the thread in a different direction (the photos are magnificent!) … can anybody explain the obsession with personal fireworks in DC? I’ve been here 5 years, in two different neighborhoods, and just don’t get it. So maybe some can explain this tradition of people sending off fireworks — some of which aren’t small — continuously for many hours, going on until well after midnight.

    Not only is it the inconsiderate noise, the safety and fire hazard issues, and the rather large piles of burnt out fireworks and boxes that are left as litter on the sidewalks and streets, but … we have one of the best official displays in the country right here in town!

    Maybe it’s just my experience, but this seems to be almost every block. Can some old-timer give me a clue?

    • Fireworks are fun.

      Snark aside, DC is absolutely obsessed with personal fireworks. I wonder where they get the money for all them, they ain’t cheap.

    • Are you the type of person who loves to eat at chain restaurants, listens to the same music you did in high school, and would rather hire someone to fix something than try to figure it out yourself?

      I’ve been here only four years, and wandering the streets to watch neighborhood fireworks on the Fourth is one of my favorite things to do. In hanging out and joining folks setting off crates of fireworks, I think I’ve found that it’s about getting together with your neighbors and friends and making your own good time in your own familiar space.

      The National Mall fireworks are great; I can’t take anything away from them. But they’re for “the tourists,” or “out-of-towners and recent transplants,” or for “people watching at home on PBS.” Setting off fireworks in the streets with your entire block, sipping beers, watching 6 year olds share sparklers and 10 year olds build up the courage to take hold of a roman candle and shoot it skyward… these are *your* fireworks, and the danger (by which I really mean the closeness: the dash away after lighting bottle rockets, feeling spent ashes fall in your hair, hearing your ears ring after a particularly big boom), makes it fun. You should join in. And if you don’t like the noise, I’d say loosen up and have another beer to fall asleep: it’s the Fourth of July, we should all be friends and happy to not be British.

      • Thanks for your answer; I can appreciate the value of your core sentiments.

        That said … I hate chain restaurants, my musical tastes have evolved radically since high school, and I pretty regularly fix my car, bikes, appliances, and do projects around my house. So that stereotype is way off.

        I agree with the “out of towner” mentality for the mall stuff, and usually avoid them for the same reason. Your thoughts on using it as a mingling opportunity … . Probably worth doing, although all the shootings give me pause.

        But I don’t see any excuse for all the trash, and question whether it needs to keep going beyond midnight. Makes those of us who need sleep and have to go to work early rather grumpy!

    • What’s not to like about fireworks – they are loud, playing with fire, pretty colors, fly high – things that lots of people like (we’ve seen them before yet we go and are awed like we’ve never seen them before each year for many). It’s something to do. Create a little magic in your block of the world. Not that I don’t agree with the noise at all hours, the safety issues, etc. But there are many reason why getting fireworks into your hands would appeal. And no I’m not one of the people who shoots them off in my neighborhood. I’m plenty happy watching the major displays and turning out the lights.

    • Ummm – because fireworks are fun? Why does it have to be any more than that? They’re loud and blow up and involve fire – what’s not fun about all those things? And doing it yourself is very, very different than watching the big ‘official’ fireworks from 9:10pm till 9:27PM Wednesday night.

      If you want to get high-minded about it – what better way to celebrate liberty than doing it yourself, rather than being yoked to an official event?

      As for ‘inconsiderate’, sure, I guess, but so it’s noisy for a few nights a year – when else would you expect them to be set off? You can’t do it in the daytime, and although it isn’t strictly just July 4th, it does taper off as the supplies are used up. At least it’s predictable – can’t you take protective measures? Wear ear plugs, close your windows, go on vacation?

      As for litter… sure that shouldn’t happen. But it shouldn’t happen on the Mall either, but every July 5th there are huge crews at work cleaning up the big official mess there.

      Really – is any of this that big a mystery?

  • I have always wondered about where they’re getting the money for the personal fireworks, too. The ones in Upshur Park can rival the “official” displays you’d see in small towns, and they go on for 3+ hours. Who is dropping thousands of dollars on fireworks?

    And for the record- neighborhood fireworks are cool. Spending time with everyone in the neighborhood is cool. Lasting much longer than the ones on the Mall is cool. But shooting them off after midnight on weeknights is not cool. And not cleaning up afterwards is even less cool.

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