‘It’s massive’: Setup begins for Thunder Over Evans

It takes a lot to put together the massive fireworks show at Thunder Over Evans.
Published: May. 19, 2023 at 5:04 PM EDT|Updated: May. 21, 2023 at 11:47 PM EDT
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EVANS, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Saluting our troops in a spectacular fireworks display to celebrate our armed forces returns on Saturday.

Thousands come out for Thunder of Evans. Organizers say they are ramping up the show with a drone show and a band performing.

Our First Alert Meteorologist Mikel Hannah-Harding went behind the scenes to check out the setup. It takes a lot to put together the massive fireworks show at Thunder Over Evans.

“Over 50,000 pounds of fireworks. That’s not counting 60 pounds of 2FA powder just to launch the fireballs,” said Craig Butler, licensed pyrotechnician at Pyro Shows. “It’s massive”.

Even though some of the equipment and the fireworks come from out of town, most of the crew is from the CSRA.

“I come from Thomson. Most of my crew is from here. We’ve been here since 7 o’clock this morning,” said Butler.

He says to set up takes two days and 350 gallons of gasoline for the fireballs.

“The computer will tell something in this layout to fire over 1,800 times,” he said. “We couldn’t do it without modern technology. We’ll be running five computers.”

All of this is to honor our military. Major sponsor Andy Jones with Gerald Jones Auto Group says that’s the main goal.

“Everything here is for one thing: to tell the military we appreciate them and to show it,” he said.

Veterans, especially from the Vietnam era, say this is important to them.

Veteran Mike Dickerson said: “I’ve worked with people for 30 years that did not know I was a Vietnam veteran. Events like this help the Vietnam veterans recognize that the community appreciates them.”

Butler tells us that he cannot stress enough how important it is to be here in person to see the show.