5, 4, 3, 2, 1! Have you ever wondered what goes into planning a pyrotechnic show? Spoiler alert- it’s quite the process! Kettering’s Go 4th! stands out among the area’s fireworks displays – we have several elements you’re not going to find anywhere else. Rozzi’s Famous Fireworks in Loveland, Ohio has been in charge of putting on Kettering’s show for several years – we asked vice president, Mike Lutz, to give us an up-close look.
It all starts with the soundtrack. Lutz meets with city officials and the fire department early in the year to get input and creates a soundtrack based on their thoughts and suggestions. “I like to have the tempo of the music change every 20 – 40 seconds,” he said. “It keeps the show active and moving.”
Once the soundtrack is complete, the pyrotechnic experts at Rozzi’s use a software program to sync the music with the fireworks. “The layout and software translates into the program we use to fire the fireworks,” Lutz explained. This program ensures that all fireworks go off in the right order and the right direction. This process is spaced out over time, but generally takes two to three full days to complete.
“It’s a fun thing to see it go all the way from talking stages to actually executing it,” Lutz said. “Very few places in this region have this type of intricate fireworks show.”
Recently, Rozzi’s has been working with a manufacturer in Italy to gain a more active role in the manufacturing process. This has given them the opportunity to develop products for specific shows. They have created a shell especially for Kettering – a large firework with several smaller fireworks inside – that is used only at Go 4th!
Setup of the show at Delco Park is a three-day process, and the park setting is part of what makes Go 4th! so different. “Kettering’s lake and hillside make a nice amphitheater. It’s a fun one to do every year,” Lutz said. “We do water effects using the pond that are not done anywhere else. We shoot flares off the pond and out from the pond.”
Another tradition Rozzi’s reserves for Kettering’s Go 4th? Everyone’s favorite O-H-I-O chant during the show! Don’t forget to sing along!