‘Bigger and better than ever,’ fireworks vendor gears up for MLT 3rd of July

Fireworks from last year’s 3rd of July Celebration. (File photo by Natalie Covate)

In addition to numerous family-friendly activities, live music and food options, fireworks lovers have another reason to attend this year’s edition of the Mountlake Terrace July 3rd event at Ballinger Park: organizers promise the aerial pyrotechnics display will be bigger and better than ever.

The July 3rd Stars & Stripes Celebration is set for Ballinger Park, 23000 Lakeview Dr. in Mountlake Terrace, from 3-11 p.m. The fireworks show is slated to begin at approximately 10 p.m.

While the location of the event – now in its third year – hasn’t changed, the fireworks discharge site and display site have been moved “to give us the opportunity to provide a much larger show,” said Western Display Fireworks owner Heather Gobet.

The hundreds of shells that will make up the 18- to 20-minute show will be fired from the boat launch area of Ballinger Park; the display will be targeted over Ballinger Lake, a change from previous years when the fireworks burst over a cordoned-off portion of the park.

The changes in discharge and display sites will enable the Western Display Fireworks pyrotechnicians to fire four-inch shells, up from three-inch shells used in 2016 and 2017. This will result in the fireworks display reaching 400 feet in the air, with a burst diameter reaching a maximum of 400 feet, said Gobet.

While the changes in the pyrotechnic show will bring a bigger display, it will require a little extra work from first responders and event volunteers. Portions of Lake Ballinger in the fireworks fallout zone will be kept clear by South Snohomish County Fire and Rescue on July 3rd; volunteers will be combing the lake the next day to clean up any remaining debris from the display.

The Mountlake Terrace fireworks show is just one of 25 that Western Display Fireworks is in charge of on July 3rd. The 80-year-old family-owned company out of Canby, Oregon will also be conducting more than 200 shows on the July 4, including the big Seattle display over Lake Union.

While attendance for the Mountlake Terrace event dwarfs the numbers that are drawn to Seattle on July 4, there are still reminders given by event organizers to the many that are expected to attend. There is no general public parking available at Ballinger Park on July 3 (only ADA parking). Attendees are encouraged to walk, ride a bike or take the free shuttles from the Mountlake Terrace Transit Center, the Nile Golf & Country Club or the former home of Creekside Church at 7011 226th Pl. S.W.

Also, no smoking, alcohol or personal fireworks are allowed inside Ballinger Park. Pets must be on a leash.

The Mountlake Terrace 3rd of July Stars & Stripes Celebration will include numerous food vendors, pony rides, inflatables, live music performances, games and crafts. Admission is free.

–By Doug Petrowski


  1. Oh good! More fireworks!! Just what we need! There will be a full month of fireworks in MLT in addition to these fireworks. Who pays for this firework display at Ballinger Park? Let’s put it to the vote of the people in MLT who overwhelming voted to outlaw sale of fireworks here in the city/or the setting off of these devices. The police dept. does NOT respond to complaints of fireworks/firecrackers going off for during this month long barrage of noise that disrupts sleep and terrifies animals. Go down to Seattle and enjoy the fireworks down there on the fourth. Let’s ban it TOTALLY here in MLT and/or send it to a vote of the citizens here.

  2. Why would they have a fireworks display on July 3rd instead of July 4th? Isn’t that a bit too much?

    1. 1. Everyone has them on July 4. Less “competition”
      2. The cost for the fireworks on July 3 is mich much less than July’s 4.
      3. Most people have the 4th off from work so why not schedule a late evening event the night before.

  3. I’m looking forward to the festivities. Does anyone know if the gate that leads from the Interurban Trail into the park will be open this year? Last year it was padlocked closed.

    1. I think that was where they were launching the firweorks from last year, so it would have been a bit of a dangerous zone. Taking the Interurban up to the Lakeview trail and around would bring you to the park.

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