Nonprofits wait for fireworks sales to explode

Groups that run booths raise money for activities

By Dave Kern, Columbian assistant metro editor


photoThere's a full choice of fireworks at the booth run by the Brush Prairie Baptist Church Revolution Student Center at Northeast 63rd Street and Andresen Road. Salesman Jacob Mullins said the best seller is the Excaliber 24 assorted effects mortars for $59.99.

(/The Columbian)

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Personal fireworks

Fireworks stands can operate in Clark County from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. through July 4.

Discharge hours are as follows:

• Unincorporated areas:

9 a.m. to 11 p.m. July 1-3; 9 a.m. to midnight July 4.

• Vancouver: 9 a.m to 11 p.m. July 1-3; 9 a.m. to midnight July 4.

• Battle Ground: 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. June 29 to July 3; 9 a.m. to midnight July 4; 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. July 5.

• Camas: 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. July 1-3; 9 a.m. to midnight July 4.

• Washougal: 9 a.m. to midnight July 4.

• Ridgefield: 9 a.m to 11 p.m. June 29 - July 3 ; 9 to midnight July 4; 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. July 5.

• La Center: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. June 29 - July 3 ;4 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. July 4.

• Yacolt: 9 a.m. -to11 p.m. June 29 - July 3 ; 9 to midnight July 4.

Visit Washington State Patrol or City of Vancouver for more information.

"It's slow," Jennifer Foster said of fireworks sales at her booth near Hazel Dell's Walmart store at 3:30 p.m. Sunday.

"We would like to make $20,000, if possible," she said.

"We" is All-Star Fusion Cheerleading at 1417 N.E. 76th St. About 100 children, 3 to 18, take classes at the Vancouver and Longview locations.

Sales from the booth will pay for cheerleaders to go to national championships in San Diego next April, Foster said. She is the office manager for the business.

The booth is the property of TNT Fireworks. All-Star gets 20 percent of sales, Foster said. Sales for four days were at about $5,000, she said, meaning about $1,000 for All-Star Fusion.

Foster and her husband, Terry, have their trailer at the lot. Their children, twins Jayden and Connor, 9, and Parker, 4, are there, too.

Shane Albright of Orchards also was concerned about slow sales at All-Star. His 9-year-old daughter, AnneMarie, has been taking cheerleading lessons for five years.

"It's her only activity," he said. "Lots of gymnastics, dancing and tumbling. It gives her something she wants to focus on. It's something healthy that we can focus on as a family."

A network engineer at Kaiser Permanente, Albright said his Sunday shift at the booth would start at 6 p.m. and end at 11 p.m.

Kiley McCarroll, 16, a Union High School student who was volunteering at the booth, said she loves cheerleading.

"I am a base. We do lots of stunts and tumbling. I love throwing the girls in the air with the other bases, and just being crazy with the girls."

She's at the studio most days, she said, noting, "That's where my life is."

Four young men from Springfield, Ore., were shopping in the All-Star booth.

Asked to describe "safe and sane" fireworks sold in Oregon, Levi Fitzgerald, 16, said, "Lame."

How much will he spend?

"Fifty-four dollars," Fitzgerald said firmly. He was holding the "Texas Cyclone" aerial display that was priced at $13 and the Space Flyer for $5.

Asked what the Space Flyer does, Fitzgerald said, "I don't know, just shoot up and spin, I'm guessing."

He said the four had been to three booths and "we'll probably go to another two places."

Students at the Brush Prairie Baptist Church Revolution Center were selling to some Oregonians, too, said Jacob Mullins, 18, a Mountain View High graduate headed to Clark College.

"We're doing pretty good," Mullins said.

"Today's been a little slow but we've made $600 to $700," said Doug Pearson of Battle Ground, who is an adult helper at the center, which offers after-school activities, including video games, pool, ping-pong, homework help and food.

The church booth is owned by Grand Slam Fireworks at the corner of 63rd Street and Andresen Road. The church group gets 20 percent of sales.

The students weren't certain of their financial goal.

"He (Pastor Bryan Campbell) wants to do enough for camp," said Jenny Reynolds, 17, a La Center High School student. She said the church wants to send 36 youngsters to Dunes Bible Camp on the Long Beach peninsula this month.

Mullins said that by the time sales end at 11 p.m. July 4, he will have worked 84 hours in the booth.

Mariah Boam, 16, a Prairie High School student, said she, too, will put in 84 hours.

Some of the students are staying all night at the booth. Mullins said he would be sleeping in his car Sunday night.

Boam said the long hours aren't so bad, but noted, "It's a little tough in the morning."