Fireworks

Despite a shortage in the supply chain, PJ’s Fireworks has seen an increase over last year’s sales.

The Fourth of July means hotdogs, beverages, sunburns, but most importantly: fireworks. Last year, Americans spent one billion dollars on fireworks. Owner P.J. Kovac says that up to this point, PJ’s Fireworks is ahead of last year’s numbers.

“It’s a little early, but we’re ahead of last year by a decent margin,” Kovac said. “Last year was a record year for everybody because of COVID. They ran everybody out of stock and it caused a little shortage this year.”

The shortage in fireworks could cause a loss of about 30% due problems with the supply chain. In 2020, the United States imported 255 million pounds of fireworks. Kovac said the issues overseas have caused people to drive long distances to find the product.

“Almost all of it is imported,” Kovac said. “There use to be a couple of firework places back when I got in the business in 1988.”


In a normal year, Kovac begins placing firework orders in September. But do to last year’s demand, Kovac said he placed all of his orders in early August.

Despite the need to import most of his stock, Kovac said that a lot of his prices stayed the same for 30 years. But consumers will see a slight increase on some of the products at their firework stands in 2021.

“When we opened in 1988, I sold Saturn Missile Battery 100-shots for $5.99,” Kovac said. “Up until last year they were $1.99 and this year they went up to $3.99 and a lot higher in some places.”

The hike in prices ALSO can be found outside of the firework stand this Fourth of July season. Experts expect pre-pandemic travel numbers this season. Those traveling will see an 86% increase in rental car prices from a year ago. Mid-range hotel rates are also on the rise, up roughly 30% from last year.

Anthony Crane can be reached at anthonytcrane@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @crane_anthony

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