Fireworks fun, but be careful out there

In British Columbia it's hard to think of Halloween without also thinking of fireworks

Andi Grono shows off some of this year’s spectacular fireworks.

Andi Grono shows off some of this year’s spectacular fireworks.

Whether it’s cakes, air bombs, barrages or simple sparklers, it doesn’t matter. Andi Grono loves them all.

“I can’t imagine a Halloween without fireworks,” said the Parksville resident and co-owner of Far Out Fireworks. “I would be lost without them. I really would.”

This is the 13th year she and partner Maggie Stevens have set up shop, supplying people with the bangs and pops and fountains they love during the October Halloween season.

The trailer-based, temporary store at the side of Highway 4A in Errington holds a wide variety of packaged fireworks, with colourful name, each with an assortment of sparkling, flashing, banging pyrotechnics. However, Grono takes pride in individualizing people’s private family fireworks displays.

“We give you what you need, depending on age, noise level and location. The first thing that goes through my mind is age, then budget, then location. A lot of the younger kids don’t like a lot of the really big bangs and loud noises, because it kind of scares them and I don’t want to scare any little kids. I want them to love fireworks and to grow up loving them.”

She also takes the sex of the children into consideration, although she stressed it’s not her major consideration.

“Gender factors into it a little bit. When they get to about age 10, the boys want something that goes bang, while the girls like the pretty, sparkly colours, although that’s not always the case. Some of the girls like the noise and some of the boys like the pretty, too.”

This year, she said, manufacturers have come up with some exciting new products, along with the age-old favourites.

“It’s mostly the cakes,” she said of the squat, multi-shot, multi-effect fireworks. “It’s a show in a box that you just light, step back and you have a great show.”

Grono stressed the importance of safety, noting fireworks can cause distress to pets and should only be set off by adults.

Although they are only visible in a storefront at Halloween, Far Out Fireworks is available year-round and can be reached at