Overview of Louisville Firework Laws

People By Lake Looking At Illuminated Fireworks During Night
••• Julio Alexander Alonzo / EyeEm / Getty Images

In the weeks before the Fourth of July, tents start springing up in parking lots all across town selling Louisville fireworks. These tents carry a variety of what many people would consider kid's fireworks--sparklers, cone fountains, spinners, and smoke bombs. And, as of 2011, fireworks (including those which explode or are launched into the air) are legal to purchase in the state of Kentucky.

Kentucky State law allows individuals to buy “1.4 consumer fireworks” as of 2011.

This classification includes items such as Roman candles, firecrackers and bottle rockets. But before you set them off, check and be sure your local ordinance has green-lit the use of such fireworks. A handful of local communities have put their own local regulations in place to discourage this state law.

Fireworks Safety Tips

  • Beware of what is around. Only use fireworks outdoors and do not shoot fireworks close to buildings, cars or anything else around that could possibly catch fire.
  • Make sure adults are in charge of the fireworks. Adults are to handle the fireworks while alert and sober. Do not mix drinking of alcohol and fireworks. If there are kids around, be sure to instruct them to stay about from the fireworks and if they are interested in sparklers, provide adult supervision.
  • Keep everyone away from the fireworks, not just children. Everyone watching fireworks need to stay away from where the fireworks are being ignited.
  • Do not attempt to re-light a firework. If the display was a dud, leave it be. After waiting for it to cool—experts recommend 20 minutes—soak the “dud” firework in a bucket of water.
  • In fact, be sure to douse all firework remains. Do not throw them away, soak them in water to be sure they are no longer hot, or a threat.
  • The individual who is the designated shooter should have safety precautions in place. Follow directions and never try to alter or combine fireworks. Keep a bucket of water and/or a fire extinguisher and/or a working water hose nearby. Wear safety glasses and never lean over a firework while lighting it.
  • Always... safety first!

Fourth of July in Louisville

Are you interested in fireworks for a 4th of July celebration? If so, do not think you have to host your own event. There are plenty of places to go, things to do, and firework displays to enjoy in and around Louisville. Often, if you are simply looking for a firework display, it can be more relaxing to enjoy the booming lights in the sky when someone else is in charge. A lot of people prefer to leave fireworks to the professionals, which takes away the stress surrounding the explosives.

Thunder Over Louisville

Can we talk about fireworks in Louisville without mentioning Thunder? No way! Thunder Over Louisville is largest annual pyrotechnics display in North America. The firework and air show celebration takes place annually, every April, and marks the official launch of the Kentucky Derby Festival, weeks of parties, art fairs, hot air balloons and more, all culminating in with the horserace on the first Saturday in May.

If you are in Louisville during Derby Season, be sure to get a Pegasus Pin and join in the fun!

What horserace is the Kentucky Derby Festival festivities surrounding? The Kentucky Derby, of course!! Over half a million people attend Thunder Over Louisville each year, the banks of the Ohio River are filled with fans, that is an example of how exciting (and important) Derby Season is around Louisville. If you are thinking of attending, here are Top 5 Thunder Over Louisville Tips.

Note: Jessica Elliott's article was edited by a current expert. May, 2016.