COTTLEVILLE, MO (KTVI)-- Fireworks stands are now open in areas around St. Louis. The earliest anyone can legally sell them in Missouri is 2 weeks before the 4th of July. Each county has its own regulations.
Tom Whelan owns Mr. Whelan's fireworks stand on Mid Rivers Mall in Cottleville.
"Last year was brutal," said Whelan. "We had triple digit heat and a drought."
Whelan is a school teacher who has sold fireworks for 29 years. He expects to make up for last year's loss, thanks to all the rain in recent weeks.
Carole Nemeth was shopping for fireworks on Thursday with her family.
"It's amazing what they can do with them," said Nemeth. "I'm planning on a big celebration."
The Fire Marshal for the O'Fallon, Mo Fire Protection District encourages fireworks lovers to go to an organized, neighborhood display. Mark Morrison expects more backyard fireworks this year compared to 2012.
"We're not in a drought period so you're gong to have a lot more people shooting fireworks out on their own lawn this year," predicts Morrison.
He says adult supervision and eye protection are extremely important. He also says have a hose or an extinguisher handy along with a bucket of water to soak any duds.
"Do not try to re-light those duds," said Morrison. He says his department sees a spike of fire related calls during the 4th of July week.
Whelan offers his customers safety advice and helps them create their own backyard displays. He says ultimately the weather determines how many customers he will see.