Sunday, July 5, 2009

PART ONE: Friends, Family And Fireworks--Fourth Of July On The Jordan Pond (Summer Visitation 2009)

Photo By John Hoff

For years, residents of Jordan have been saying the neighborhood itself puts on the best fireworks show in the region. Acting under what appears to be a de facto policy of police tolerance, residents host a spontaneous, unorganized, but amazing fireworks show. It appears to have no definite beginning, and... clear end. People just start shooting off rockets, and the firworks go on until late at night. It must have been about one o'clock in the morning before the major explosions stopped. A large group of Hmong residents put on a particularly good show, with one guy actually climbing on a garage roof...just like the per-fessionals! 

One misdirected rocket ended up in the Jordan Pond, and went off like a fiery spider. At moments like that you have to think, gee, that could have easily ended up IN MY LAP as I sit in this lawn chair.

But, of course, the anarchy aspect is part of the fun. And, despite being mere minors under semi-intoxicated adult supervision, it seems like even 12-year-olds have enough sense to point the rocket toward the pond, not toward the picnic tables.

I told my son to call his mother on my cell phone and assure her that he still had all his fingers. Sitting in the Jordan Neighborhood, with explosions going off all around, my son called my ex-wife in her affluent suburb and told her all about the grassroots fireworks show in NoMi, and how he was right in the middle of it.

In the photo above, my son poses with "The Rocket Boys."

Some said this year's show was a lot smaller than previous years, and blamed the recession.

However, there was a really cool and bizarre police incident right in the middle of the celebration, so it's hard to top something like THAT. Details to follow.


Jeanie Hoholik said...


Does the shot spotter detect firworks? Just curious as to how accurate it is.

Megan G. said...

Jeanie - from what I have heard when shot spotter first went up they had a crazy hard time distinguishing between the gun fire and the fire works. After some tweaking and some effort, I hear the shot spotter is working as designed and IIRC, can even distinguish different caliber gun shots.

Margaret would know more, let's hear from her. Or Councilman Samuels?