Fourth of July festivities are some of the most enjoyable times of the entire year. Cook-outs, beach trips, a day at the lake and usually some fireworks mixed in somewhere bring families together to celebrate the country's birthday.

Law enforcement officials urge citizens to heed a few safety tips to ensure everyone can spend time with loved ones and avoid a trip to the emergency room.

Many of the larger more dangerous fireworks are illegal in North Carolina. Anyone interested in seeing a large fireworks display should do so at a controlled show put on by professionals. Sheriff David Grice recommends leaving any area where untrained amateurs are using fireworks.

"Always watch out for fires," Grice said. "Make sure any fireworks are away from anything flammable. Never confine any explosives. It only amplifies that effects of fireworks."

When using smaller fireworks, people can take a few safety precautions to prevent potentially dangerous accidents from occurring. A water source should be kept close by at all times in the event a spark ignites a fire. Small children should never handle any kind of firework. Light one firework at a time and always wear eye protection. Fireworks should never be pointed at people, buildings, vehicles, flammable materials or animals, and bystanders need to be at least 500 feet away from any live display.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product and Safety Commission, approximately 9,000 people visit emergency rooms with firework-related injuries every year.

Spending time on the water is a popular recreation during the Independence Day holiday. Whether at the pool, lake or ocean, swimmers need to be aware that accidents can happen in the blink of an eye. Grice recommends that anyone who plans to be near water should know how to swim. People should be aware of the "dangerous too's," Grice said, such as too tired, too cold, too far from safety, too much sun or too much strenuous activity.

Never swim alone and take frequent breaks from the water.

"Following these precautions will help the children and citizens of Davidson County stay safe and healthy this holiday weekend," Grice said. "Sadly, most deaths from drowning occur within a few feet from safety."

Motorists should remember the Fourth of July is one of the busiest holidays of the year on the highways.

"I would remind all motorists to practice the Golden Rule when driving — be courteous and tolerant of other drivers," said Grice. "Please don't get angry with bad drivers or reckless ones — just get out of their way. Let's make this summer a safe one on the roads in Davidson County."

Staff Writer Eliot Duke can be reached at 888-3578, or



The HiToms will hold a fireworks extravaganza at Finch Field, 7003 Ballpark Road, Thomasville, on July 4. The game begins at 7 p.m. and the fireworks show begins after the game. The $7 admission price includes the fireworks show.

The city of Lexington will host its Fantastic Fourth from 6 to 9:30 p.m. July 4 at Finch Park, 15 Paul Beck Road. The free family event includes music, rides, inflatables and amusements for children and kids of all ages. The fireworks begin between 9 and 9:30 p.m. For more information call 336-248-3960 or visit

Top of the Rock fireworks show will be held Friday, July 5. The music begins at dusk and the fireworks at dark. Fireworks may be viewed from Hwy. 8 Bridge or surrounding area. For more information call 240-0156. Top of the Rock is located at 339 N. Shore Drive in Lexington. 

Archdale will hold its annual Fun Fourth at Creekside Park on July 4. Rides will open at 2 p.m. and food and craft vendors at 3 p.m. The Part Time Party Time Band will perform at 7 p.m. Fireworks begin about 9 p.m.

High Point Parks and Recreation will hold Uncle Sam Jam on July 4 at Oak Hollow Festival Park, 1841 Eastchester Drive. Gates open at 4:30 p.m. Parking is $10. No alcohol. Bags and coolers will be searched. Live music starts at 5 p.m. Food and beverages will be sold. A children’s area offers crafts and activites. Fireworks begin at 9:45 p.m.