2016 Highlights

The 2019 Fireworks are scheduled for Thursday, July 4, 2019, with a rain date of Friday, July 5, 2019.

Some highlights and interesting facts regarding the 2018 Fireworks Show:

  •  We utilized 26 3” mortar tube racks for the show (each of these racks contains 10 individual 3” tubes per rack).
  •  We utilized 18 4” mortar tube racks for the show (each of these racks contains 6 individual 4 “ tubes per rack).
  •  We utilized 11 5” mortar tube racks for the show (each of these racks contains 5 individual 5” tubes per rack).
  •  We utilized 5 6” mortar tube racks for the show (each of these racks contains 4 individual 6” tubes per rack).


In total, we fired 444 shells in conjunction with the 2018 show (62 more shells in 2018 than in 2017)

 The 62 additional shells in 2018 consisted of 58 more 4” shells and 4 more 5” shells.
The 444 total shells consisted of the following types of shells:

100 3” shells for the grand finale
132 3” shells
30 3” salute shells (the shells that make the loud bang noise)
108 4” shells
54 5” shells
20 6” shells

For every 1” of shell size, a shell lifts 100 feet in the air.  (e.g., a 4” shell will lift 400 feet in the air whereas a 5” shell will lift 500 feet in the air).

We have been not been reloading mortars and only using one shell per mortar for at least the last five years which has greatly increased the fireworks team safety.  The fireworks industry has found that many accidents occur from reloading shells using the same mortars to fire the shells.  There is even talk of a movement within the fireworks industry to ban the practice of reloading shells using the same mortars to fire the shells.

Thanks to the following volunteers


Firing Crew:

  • Stephen (Steve) Altenburg – 4th year firing off fireworks
  • Scott Erickson – 12th year firing off fireworks
  • Paul Payant – 12th year firing off fireworks
  • Glen Krevoshein – 12th year firing off fireworks

We unfortunately missed the assistance of Ty Yelich (2nd year firing off fireworks) but look forward to his resumed involvement next year.

Logistics Crew:
These folks put out bouys to mark out fall out zone to keep boats and spectators back per insurance requirements, build a large skid to had the mortar racks transported to and from the island, clean up the island the day after the fireworks show, put mortar racks in storage until next year, and anything else that is needed to make the show work.


  • Tyler Yelich (Ty Yelich’s Son)
  • Tom Altenburg (Steve Altenburg’s Father)
  • Steve Altenburg
  • Scott Erickson
  • Jake Erickson

Scott Rogers on Forest Dr. shot this great aerial drone video!

Fourth of July

We are looking for individuals to volunteer their time to make the Greater Bass Lake Fireworks a continuing tradition.  
As many of you know, there is a lot involved in pulling off the annual fireworks show.  For many years, a lot of work has fallen on a few individuals that have not only handled lighting the fireworks but also all the tasks that go along with getting the show set up so that it is conducted in as safe a manner as possible.  

In order to try to lessen the work load on the individuals that handle the planning, set up, and shooting off of the fireworks, we are looking to form volunteer crews to assist with the following items:

- Crew to assist with transporting items to and from the island which mostly consists of transporting the mortar racks to and from the island - THIS IS THE GREATEST NEED FOR VOLUNTEERS.  We have a significant number of mortar racks (60 in total at last count that weigh anywhere from 15 to 40 pounds each).  We are looking for young strong individuals to assist with this task.  This could be a good opportunity to volunteer your high school and/ or college aged children or grandchildren to assist with this task.  It involves getting our mortar racks out of our storage unit at the Greater Bass Lake Storage Units, loading them onto a pontoon boat on a trailer, hauling the mortar racks up to the center of the island and putting them together. 


We utilize dollys/ hand trucks to wheel the heavy mortar racks up the island hill on the island.  We screw the individual mortar racks together with plywood to prevent any individual mortar racks from accidentally tipping over and firing into the crowd or any other unintended direction.  This crew would also assist with disassembling the mortar racks the day after the fireworks show and help us return them to their storage unit.

- Crew to assist with the clean-up of the island the day after the fireworks so that we leave the island cleaner than we found it.  This is vital so that we are allowed to continue to utilize the island in future years. This involves burning empty boxes that the fireworks came in and raking debris from the fireworks and burning these items in the fire pit and/ or taking these items off the island to the county dump.

 FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO VOLUNTEER CONTACT STEVE ALTENBURG  AT 858-373-8565 OR VIA EMAIL AT STEVEALTENBURG@LIVE.COM

Bass Lake Rocks

Volunteer!