If you prefer to avoid the crowds and cover charges this year, having your own backyard fireworks show is always an option. Don't forget that there are laws to follow and safety regulations to keep in mind so your July Fourth doesn't end on the wrong note.
Maryland Fireworks regulations:
•Without an official permit from the Maryland State Fire Marshal, backyard fireworks are illegal, resulting in a fine of up to $250. Transporting fireworks from Pennsylvania is also illegal.
•In Baltimore County, however, ground-based sparkler devices are legal. Hand-held sparklers that do not contain any chlorates or perchlorates are also legal. Check out the state fire marshal website (firemarshal.state.md.us) for a full list of legal ground-based sparklers.
•You must be 16 or older to buy ground-based or hand-held sparkler devices in Maryland.
Information from the Baltimore County website
If you follow state regulations and decide to host your own backyard display, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
•Be careful and use common sense.
•The shooter should have on safety glasses.
•Have spectators stand a safe distance from the launch site.
•Do not allow children under 12 to handle fireworks or sparklers without supervision.
•Always have water handy, like a hose or a bucket.
•If you get a "dud" firework, don't relight it. Wait at least 20 minutes and then douse it with water.
•Do not combine fireworks or use homemade fireworks.
From the National Council on Fireworks Safety.