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While Debate Over Illegal Fireworks Rages, 'Safe and Sane' Sales are Booming in Boise

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The Leasure family manage two of the dozens of stands in Boise that sell 'safe and sane' fireworks. - SAVANNAH CARDON
  • Savannah Cardon
  • The Leasure family manage two of the dozens of stands in Boise that sell 'safe and sane' fireworks.
While debate over illegal fireworks in Idaho heats up just prior to the Fourth of July, scores of licensed pop-up fireworks stands have once again appeared in parking lots across Boise, and with the city's blessing.

Part-time retailers are only selling so-called "safe and sane" fireworks. Plus, the stands are only allowed to appear in Boise between June 23rd and July 5th. A few stands also open between Christmas and New Year's Day, another sanctioned time period for the legal sale of safe and sane pyrotechnics.

At a pair of stands in southwest Boise, it's all in the family. In fact, Erin Leasure, who manages one pop-up shop at the corner of Five Mile and Overland roads, can look out across her counter and wave at her father Mike, directly across the street managing the family's second fireworks stand.

“My dad initially got it going, and I got involved with him at that point,” said Leasure. “It was something I could do with my dad, hang out with him a little bit more. And this has kind of just evolved into something that him and I do every year.”

Leasure said she gets genuine delight in spending a number of hot summer days selling fireworks.

“I just love being able to spend time with my kids and with my dad. I do. I just love it,” she said. “It’s just been something we do as a family.”

Every day, from early mornings to late evenings, members of the Leasure family occupy their two booths. Making things a bit more bearable is a nearby air conditioned trailer where family members can occasionally beat the heat.

“I love talking to people, introducing them to things that I like and enjoy for one week out of the... well, ten days out of the year,” said Leasure. “I just enjoy being a part of Boise. You meet people from all walks of life.”

Leasure also likes to give away small gifts—everything from temporary tattoos to sunglasses and hats—to kids who visit the fireworks booths with their parents.

“People like it when you’re nice to them and nice to their kids. It brings people back every year,” she said.

Leasure said the long hours at the stand allow her to afford sending her daughters to a summer bible camp in McCall.

And as the Fourth of July gets nearer, Leasure says business can get a bit frantic.

“It gets kind of crazy but we typically keep our cool; we’ve never had any problems,” she said. “What it really comes down to is that my girls help out to spend time with us and I do it to spend time with my parents. We’re diehard.”
The Leasure family manages two fireworks stands near Five Mile and Overland roads. - SAVANNAH CARDON
  • Savannah Cardon
  • The Leasure family manages two fireworks stands near Five Mile and Overland roads.

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