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WEST ALTON - Fireworks City’s sales are booming ahead of the July 4th weekend.
With their famous “buy one get four free” deal, the family-owned West Alton, MO., location invites other families to celebrate Independence Day with their products.
“Fourth of July has always been my favorite holiday,” Owen Thomeczek, son of the owners and longtime employee, said. “Seeing everyone come in every year, all my friends working with me, it’s always a good time here. I hope to keep doing this forever.”
Owen’s grandfather opened Fireworks City in 1964. Today, the store is owned by Owen’s father and aunts. Since his mother, Jody, started dating his father at age 15, she has had a front-row seat behind the counter as the store’s popularity soared and her family grew.
Jody remembers that they used to sell mainly firecrackers, Roman candles and bottle rockets, with a limited supply of bigger fireworks. But the store blew up when they started offering fireworks with 500 grams of pyrotechnic powder. These fireworks, known as 500-gram cakes, are often used as finales in fireworks displays.
“Eventually, it just got bigger and bigger,” Jody said. “My boys can do all these shows.”
But you don’t have to be blood to be a part of the family. Cameron Bell has worked there every summer for four years. She credits the Thomeczek family as the reason she always comes back, adding that she loves the “close-knit” feeling of the shop.
“The best part is definitely seeing the little kids and showing them what my favorite things were when I was younger because my family used to shop here, and just giving them all the free things, and kind of seeing that full circle moment from when I was younger to all the new stuff that we have now,” Bell added.
As Independence Day nears, Fireworks City is experiencing its annual surge of customers from around the region. It’s the Thomeczeks family’s favorite time of year, and they have plenty of products and free fireworks to make sure you have a blast this weekend.
“I just love being here and helping everyone out,” Owen said. “People come in here every day asking for me, my mom, my dad, my aunt Monica. It’s really special to me, seeing everyone coming in asking for a different person, because just depending on who helped them the previous year, they want that same person, that same deal. It’s always a joy and pleasure helping people out and giving to the community.”
To learn more about Fireworks City, visit their website.
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