That's how Joe Rozzi, vice president of sales for Rozzi's Famous Fireworks, describes business these days. What's normally the 90-year-old company's busiest time of year has been cut in half due to the coronavirus pandemic.
"We should have been shooting fireworks since Opening Day," he says. "With Reds games, our amusement parks - some of them do nightly shows - and none of them are open. It's been the weirdest thing I've ever seen in my life."
After all, what is a Fourth of July holiday without fireworks?
Luckily, Rozzi says a few smaller communities have helped fill the gap left by the larger companies and muncipalities that have opted out of firework displays this year, a move Rozzi says he understands. "I don't blame anyone for what they've had to do. It's nobody's fault."
And so this year, you can see Rozzi's Famous Fireworks in places like Fairfield, Harrison, Lebanon and Sycamore Township. Additional communities are also putting on firework displays with other companies.
"They're smaller shows, but you know, everything helps and we appreciate those people stepping up," Rozzi says.
Below is a list of some of the events WVXU could confirm are happening this weekend of America's 244th birthday. If you are able to venture out, Rozzi says it should be easy to do so safely.
"If there's a community that's having fireworks, we'd encourage you to come out," he says. "You can watch from your car, you can watch from a parking lot."
Cincinnati: Reds White & Blue Drive-in Fireworks; Friday, July 3, 10 p.m. The Cincinnati Reds and PNC Bank are sponsoring this free but ticketed event at Coney Island (6201 Kellogg Ave), where guests will stay in their vehicles to see the Rozzi's light show.
Fairfield: Red, White & KaBOOM; Friday, July 3, 10 p.m. The fireworks show has been redesigned to help increase the viewing area throughout Fairfield so that residents can watch from home. The display has also been shortened to 20 minutes from the usual 35.
Hamilton: Hamilton July 4th Celebration; Saturday, July 4, at 10 p.m. from Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park (1763 Hamilton-Cleves Road). Prime viewing locations include Miami Univeristy's Hamilton campus, Joyce Park soccer fields, Kevin Lodder Park, Officer Bob Gentry Park and the Booker T. Washington Community Center.
Harrison: Harrison's Fourth of July Fireworks; Saturday, July 4 at sunset. Watch via the grounds of the Community Center (300 George Street) with proper social distancing.
Indian Hill: Indian Hill Fourth of July Celebration; Saturday, July 4, 9:45 p.m. at Stephan Field in the Indian Hill Recreation Facility (6525 Drake Road). Only parked-car viewing from adjacent lots allowed and social distancing requirements must be respected.
Kings Island: Saturday, July 4, 10 p.m. for passholders only and reservations are required.
Lebanon: Friday, July 3, 10 p.m. at Colonial Park West. Best viewing is from the Warren County Fairgrounds (665 N Broadway Street) from your car. Parking will be available beginning at 8 p.m.
Loveland/Symmes Township: Fireworks; July 4, dusk. Loveland and Symmes Township are teaming up to offer their residents views of two sets of fireworks: One from Symmes Township Park (11660 Lebanon Road) and the other from Boike Park (across from Phillips Park on Rich Road). The shows can be viewed from Phillips Park, Loveland High School Home of the Braves Park and nearby church parking and subidivisions.
Mason: Red, Rhythm and Boom: This is a virtual event that takes place all day Friday, July 3.
Middletown: The BOOM!; Friday, July 3, 9:30 p.m at Berachah Church (1900 Johns Road).
Sycamore Township: Saturday, July 4, at 10 p.m. March First Brewing (7885 E. Kemper Road) is closing off its parking lot for viewing and socially distanced tailgating.
Wyoming: Saturday, July 4 at Oak Park (878 Oak Ave). The park will be closed but people can watch from Village Green, North Park, Spring Valley Bank parking lot and tennis courts or the Wyoming High School turf field.
Augusta: Fireman's Fourth of July Fireworks over the Ohio River; Saturday, July 4.
Florence: Independence Day Fireworks Display; Friday, July 3, at 10 p.m. Visible within a two-mile radius of the Florence Government Center (8100 Ewing Blvd.) Please note the center will be closed so no restrooms will be available.
Independence: Saturday, July 4 at 10 p.m. at Donna Yeager Amphiteater in Memorial Park (2003 Jack Woods Parkway).
Lawrenceburg: Fireworks, Saturday, July 4 at dusk at Hidden Valley Lake.
Madison: Madison Regatta Fireworks; Saturday, July 4 at the Bicentennial Park (101 West Vaughn Drive).
Metamora: The Metamora Volunteer Fire Department hosts a parade at 6 p.m. and fireworks show at dusk all at Gateway Park (19067 US-52).