The Crosby Chronicles: Despite ban, residents still stage their own firework shows

It’s nice to be back with those of you who read my weekly blog after going on vacation. Last week was the 4th of July meaning it was time for fireworks. Despite decades of a ban on fireworks in the Burbank and Glendale area, it seems to me (and sounds to me) that more and more people ignore the city’s ordinances and buy fireworks in communities where it is legal, then set them off here at home. 

Where I live in Burbank I am very fortunate to have a front yard seat to the city’s wonderful pyrotechnic display. However, a few years ago the house across the street was purchased by people who year after year set off their own personal display of fireworks right on the sidewalk in front of their home. The noise is incredible, so much so that I have to tranquilize my dog and even then he barks incessantly at the top of his lungs due to it. It has turned what used to be a pleasant community get together to the a day I abhor.

What I don’t get is all over the city of Burbank there are messages displayed at all the schools, “fireworks are illegal.” Yet, I don’t see any police enforcing that law. And more and more each year individuals take it upon themselves to be a nuisance and have their own firework show despite being privileged to view one of the best firework shows in the L.A. area. It might be understandable if residents were deprived of a 4th of July event, but the city does it for them for free, and at a high caliber level. So why the need for bottle rockets on the streets?

BRIAN CROSBY is a teacher in the Glendale Unified School District and the author of "Smart Kids, Bad Schools and The $100,000 Teacher." He can be reached at

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