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LA Wants To Buy Back Your 4th Of July Fireworks. Here's How (And Where To Watch A Professional Show Instead)

Fire big multicolored bursts of light fill the night sky, while streaks of light curve below. A group of people, only their dark silhouettes visible, stare up at the vibrant display.
(Stock Image by Arthur Chauvineau
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It's that time of year again. When the fireworks' crack and boom and sizzle splits the night air, and the car alarms subsequently blare, and the distressed dogs raise hell everywhere.

Independence Day is always a multi-day affair in this town, and Los Angeles officials are hoping to cut down on the use of the illegal fireworks by giving people a chance to turn them over — before the holiday — in exchange for gift cards. (By the way, all fireworks are illegal in the city, even if you buy them elsewhere.)

Councilmember Monica Rodriguez said the fireworks buyback is a way for residents to be a part of the solution.

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"Because frankly fireworks not only pose a public safety threat to wildfires," Rodriguez said, "but the health and safety of those individuals who are using these explosive devices." Plus, she added, there's "the fear that it elicits in our pets … and our seniors and vets."

You can drop off any "unwanted aerial, maximum charge, explosives, finales, and dangerous fireworks," Rodriguez's office said in a Facebook post.

The buyback will be held at Brand Park in Mission Hills and runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday. Participants will be able to get gift cards for everything from gas to groceries. How much you get will depend on how many fireworks you turn in.

Last year, the city's buyback pilot program netted more than 500 pounds of fireworks, according to Rodriguez's office.

For context, the L.A. County District Attorney's Office said Tuesday that it had seized 14,000 pounds, or 7 tons, of illegal fireworks from a home and a storage facility in Azusa. Authorities evacuated 27 homes to safely recover and dispose of the fireworks, the DA's office said.

Last year, the LAPD botched the disposal of an even bigger stash — 32,000 pounds, or 16 tons, of fireworks — that it seized from a South L.A. backyard. The resulting massive explosion injured 17 people and damaged cars and homes.

Where To Watch A Professional Fireworks Show

The L.A. Fire Department is encouraging everyone to skip the at-home explosives and attend a professional show instead. The department is keeping an updated list of permitted events on its website. County Fire is also keeping a list. Below is a selection of events from both.

City of L.A.

  • Grand Park: 200 N Spring St, Los Angeles 90012
  • Dodger Stadium: 1000 Vin Scully Ave., Los Angeles 90026
  • Beach Club: 14730 Pacific Coast Highway, Santa Monica 90402
  • Palisades Charter High School: 15777 Bowdoin St, Pacific Palisades 90272
  • Hollywood Forever Cemetery (July 2, 3, 4): 6000 Santa Monica Blvd, Hollywood 90038
  • Hollywood Bowl (July 2, 3, 4): 2301 N Highland Ave, Hollywood 90068
  • Bel Air Bay Club (Barge): 16800 Pacific Coast Hwy, Pacific Palisades 90272
  • Hillcrest Country Club: 10000 W Pico Blvd, Pico-Robertson 90064
  • Brentwood Country Club: 590 S Burlingame Ave, Brentwood 90049
  • Hansen Dam 4th of July Festival: 11658 Foothill Blvd, Lake View Terrace 91342
  • Lakeside Country Club: 4500 Lakeside Dr., Toluca Lake 91505
  • Warner Ranch Park: 5800 Topanga Blvd., Woodland Hills 91367
  • Bob Blumenfield's 4th of July Extravaganza: 5800 Topanga Blvd., Woodland Hills 91367
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County of L.A.

Fireworks FAQ's

Not all cities prohibit at-home fireworks. Below you can look up cities that allow the so-called "safe and sane" kind, courtesy of L.A. County Fire.

What questions do you have about Southern California?

Corrected June 29, 2022 at 9:18 PM PDT
An earlier. version of this story incorrectly said 27 people were injured in the incident, the correct number is 17. LAist regrets the error.