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Preparations underway for WBRZ's Fireworks on the Mississippi

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PLAQUEMINE - It's hot and dirty work preparing 4,000 fireworks for the annual July 4th celebration. The 49th annual WBRZ Fireworks on the Mississippi show will begin 9 p.m. Wednesday with the best vantage points in downtown Baton Rouge and Port Allen.

"If you shoot off a few big shells and the crowd just loves it, that's the payoff for me," said pyrotechnician Brandon Spear with J&M Displays.

Spear and his fellow pyro-specialists spend three and a half days on top a scorching barge at Verret Shipyard in Plaquemine setting up the show.

"It's hot, probably my least favorite part of the job but it comes with the territory," he said.

The fourteen hundred pounds of explosives with shells ranging from three to ten inches in diameter will detonate in a dazzling display in just under 20 minutes Wednesday night.

WBRZ and its owners the Manship family sponsor the event, which is the largest firework show in Louisiana.

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