Boomsday prepares for its 24th edition

Jessica Froula

Hundreds of thousands of people in downtown Knoxville will be getting to know each other well on Sunday, as they pack together in truck beds, lawn chairs, and blankets to watch the largest Labor Day fireworks show in the nation. The 24 th annual Boomsday will have many of the familiarities of previous years, except for one particular detail. This year, the fireworks will be shot out of railroad cars from the railroad bridge over the Tennessee River. The viewing area, however, will be much the same, according to Michael Walden, Vice President of Pyro Shows, the suppliers of the fireworks. Pyro Shows has considered Knoxville its hometown since its beginning, and Boomsday still remains one of the largest shows the company performs. Fireworks will begin at 9:30 p.m., and the event is open to the public at 1 p.m. “Boomsday’s kind of amazing,” Walden said. “The fact that it’s still around and growing 24 years later is really cool.” Throughout the day, booths will be open with food, drinks and games for a small price. There is, however, plenty to do without having to spend money. Other low to no cost events during the day include a rib-eating contest at 4 p.m., which is new for this year, and at 5:30 p.m., a Next Level Wrestling match and an MMA sparring session. “It’s really fun to tailgate with your friends and just enjoy the whole experience,” Bearden senior Kyle Myers said of previous years. Anybody who wants free entertainment can head over to the Family Fun Zone or Volunteer Landing to listen to live bands. A new band plays every half hour, and artists include Chosen, K-Town Sound, Red-Letter Disciple, Fifth Street Saints, and many more. “Boomsday is one of my favorite events in Knoxville,” Bearden junior Summer Steele said. “Watching the fireworks show with friends and family always makes a great night.”