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Rhythm and Booms is going without green

Published On: Jul 24 2013 09:15:33 PM CDT


Attendees of next year’s Rhythm and Booms celebration will not see any green-colored fireworks during the show, according to a release.

The Independence Day Celebration, scheduled for June 28, will feature fireworks choreographed to music being shot from barges on Lake Monona, according to the release.

Madison Festivals Inc. said they are eliminating the use of barium, which is used to make the color green because it is the only element used to color fireworks that is toxic or harmful.

“Outside of barium, the elements used for colors are not toxic or harmful and are found in higher concentrations in some daily vitamins and supplements than the water tested at Warner and Tenney Parks in 2005, 2010 and 2012: calcium, sodium, iron, strontium and copper,” Rita Kelliher, MFI president, said in the statement.

MFI took ownership of the event this spring and said it worked with city and county officials to find a location that is safe for people and the environment.

“MFI welcomes the opportunity to meet with neighborhood groups or alders to discuss plans for 2014, including post-show cleanup plans and answer their questions,” said Kelliher.

According to the release, a 2005 study on the impacts of fireworks on the Warner Park lagoon by Public Health-Madison and Dane County and the 2012 study from City Engineering Division did not detect spikes of trace metals used as coloring agents in fireworks.

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