Each year, thousands upon thousands of weddings take place in every single state in the US. No matter where you live, finding fun activities is an important item on the bride’s checklist. Whether you’re looking for something magical or you just want to maximize your budget, using sparklers for weddings is one of the top choices. If you happen to live in Alabama, they are particularly prevalent. However, before you decide to allocate funds to this concept, there are some important things to consider first. To help, I’ve put together this Alabama wedding sparklers guide to steer you in the right direction. Below, I’ll cover everything from where to shop to which products you should choose. Let’s get started.
Finding Wedding Sparklers Locally in Alabama
One of the biggest challenges facing couples in Alabama is finding where to buy sparklers. Sadly, your efforts can easily be hampered by having your event in the wrong region or during the wrong time of year. Fortunately, there are simple solutions for these scenarios. Here is a quick breakdown of factors that can impact your ability to shop effortlessly for your supplies.
Best Options for Finding a Nearby Retailer
During certain times of the year, there is no shortage of fireworks tents and stores that pop up. Typically, it’s easiest to locate one of these retailers during the summer months. However, they tend to disappear by the middle of July and finding items locally can become nearly impossible. Furthermore, finding where to buy wedding sparklers is not as cut and dry as you may expect; meaning that those retailers may not stock them on their shelves at all. Luckily, if you struggle finding them locally, you can always shop online instead.
Are They Sold in Stores Year Round?
One of the problematic things in Alabama is that there are restrictions on when you can sell fireworks. Since sparklers are technically considered novelties and not fireworks, one might assume finding them is easy. However, most grocery stores pull their sparklers from the shelves by mid-July. Furthermore, all fireworks shops are seasonal and only open their doors for about one month of the year. With such scarcity and a narrow window of time to shop, it’s not very likely that you’ll find them in stores year round.
Using Sparklers at a Wedding in Alabama
Other than finding where to shop, a huge chunk of this Alabama wedding sparklers guide focuses on how to use them at your event. Below, we’ll examine the laws, best-use practices, and displaying them to your guests. Once you have a firm understanding of these factors, all that remains is making your purchase. Let’s dive right in.
Alabama Wedding Sparklers Guide to the Law and Regulations
One of the nice things about this state is that almost all consumer-grade fireworks are completely legal to use. However, the major hurdles you need to consider are the legal selling period and age to purchase; which is 16 years of age. Unfortunately, retailers are only able to sell from June 20st though July 10th in the summer. Similarly, winter sales are restricted to December 15th through January 1st.
Fortunately, there are no regulations on when you can use your wedding sparklers; just when they can be sold locally. Of course, you should double-check the Alabama fireworks laws ahead of your event. But as long as you have them already, they should be completely legal to use at your wedding.
Choosing the Perfect Activity
Knowing the best activity to have at your event is a critical part of understanding this Alabama wedding sparklers guide. Of course, I’m always surprised at the new and inventive ways our customers come up with to use them on their big day. Nevertheless, there are only a handful of ideas that have stood up throughout the years. Here is a short list of some popular options.
- Use them as an accessory for your wedding exit instead of bubbles or confetti.
- Add them to your centerpieces to help decorate your reception tables.
- Use them as a cake topper instead of traditional figurines.
- Hand them out to guests as a wedding favor.
- Use them in photos as a prop or to write shapes such as letters using the spark trail.
- Decorate your champagne bottles to make the toast more exciting.
- Use them as a backdrop for the big kiss or the couples’ first dance.
These seven ideas are the most frequently used at weddings in Alabama. As I mentioned, there are other great ideas floating around out there, as well. However, I always suggest sticking to the basics. These ideas are time-tested and well-documented, so they are the easiest activities to perform without a bunch of hassle.
Using Them Outdoors
For most couples, using wedding sparklers outdoors is their top choice. Overall, it is much safer and easier to handle flammable objects in a spacious area compared to an enclosed space. Fortunately, there are many great outdoor regions in Alabama that are ideal for weddings! Here is a quick list of “natural wonders” to consider for your outdoor event.
- Natural Bridge: A 60-foot-tall rock bridge spanning over a small creek near Natural Bridge, AL.
- Noccalula Falls: A 90-foot waterfall located in Gadsden.
- Little River Canyon: A scenic canyon along Little River in the northeastern part of the state, known for its rapids and waterfall.
- Gulf State Park: A state park on the Gulf of Mexico with miles of beaches and dunes, as well as a lake and wetlands.
- Dismals Canyon: A 75-acre preserve containing a scenic sandstone canyon with waterfalls, rock formations, and unusual glowing insects.
- DeSoto Falls: A pair of waterfalls near Mentone, cascading into a deep pool surrounded by scenic cliffs.
- Cheaha Mountain: The highest point in Alabama, offering scenic views from the summit and nearby Bald Rock.
- Rickwood Caverns State Park: A state park containing a series of caverns with unique formations.
Of course, not all of these outdoor places are ideal for a wedding; nor do they all allow fireworks such as sparklers. Before booking your event, make sure to discuss your plans with the proper officials.
Using Them Indoors
One of the best features of sparklers made just for weddings is that they are smokeless. The main benefit with a smoke-free design is that they can safely be used indoors. Obviously, you need to have a space that is open enough to perform your activities safely. However, it can be a great option that will delight your guests and make for some memorable photos. Here is a quick list of popular indoor wedding venues in Alabama.
- The Grand Hotel Marriott Resort, Golf Club & Spa: A luxurious hotel in Point Clear, with multiple indoor venues for weddings, including ballrooms and a historic chapel.
- The Alabama Theatre: A historic theater in Birmingham, offering a stunning Art Deco interior for weddings.
- The Westin Birmingham: A modern hotel in downtown Birmingham, offering multiple indoor venues for weddings, including ballrooms and a rooftop terrace.
- The Renaissance Montgomery Hotel & Spa: A stylish hotel in Montgomery, with a grand ballroom and other indoor spaces for weddings.
- The Redmont Hotel: A historic hotel in Birmingham, offering multiple indoor venues for weddings, including a grand ballroom and a rooftop terrace.
- The Space & Rocket Center: A museum and cultural center in Huntsville, offering a unique indoor venue for weddings, including a Saturn V rocket.
- The Pizitz Food Hall: A historic building in Birmingham, now home to a food hall and event space, offering a unique indoor venue for weddings.
- The Trillium: A chic event venue in Birmingham, offering a spacious ballroom and modern decor for weddings.
Unfortunately, not all of these indoor wedding venues in Alabama allow the use of wedding sparklers. So, it’s crucial that you discuss your plans with the people running your chosen venue. However, most will accommodate your needs if you follow their instructions.
Best Way to Display Them at Your Event
Once you’ve selected your indoor or outdoor venue, you need to take a moment to consider how you want to disperse your sparklers to your guests. There are many different ways to display them, but there are three options that are considered the “standard”. Your first option is to simply place packages of them on your reception tables. This is easy and efficient, and works well; provided that the packaging fits your overall them.
The second option is to mix them in loosely with the flowers in your table centerpieces. This is also an easy option, but a lot of the time your guests will completely overlook them. To make them stand out, consider adorning them with sparklers tags so they are more visible. Lastly, you can place them in a sparkler display bucket at your guestbook table. This is a great option because each of your guests will make a stop there first on the way into your venue. By displaying your sparklers in an easy to find location, you can ensure that everyone is ready to perform your chosen activity.
Choosing the Best Type of Wedding Sparklers for an Alabama Celebration
Choosing the best type of sparklers for weddings is not the easiest task. There are a lot of factors to consider including how you plan to use them, where you plan to use them, and what you’ll actually be holding in your hand. However, as any great Alabama wedding sparklers guide would do, I’ve taken the liberty of laying it all out for you. Here is a breakdown of the factors you need to consider most.
Deciding on a Size
The best size sparkler for a wedding depends on the specific use and the number of guests involved. Also, you need to consider whether you are using them indoors or outdoors. Here are a few options to consider.
- 20 Inch Sparklers: These are a popular choice for send-offs and are great for large groups of people. They provide a substantial amount of sparkle and last long enough for guests to walk down the aisle or to get some good photos.
- 36 Inch Sparklers: These are even longer than the 20 inch version and create a more dramatic effect. They are great for outdoor events and provide a lot of sparkle for photos. Also, they are the longest sparklers you can buy.
- 10 Inch Sparklers: These are smaller and more suitable for more intimate wedding gatherings or for use as table decor. They also last for a shorter period of time and are less likely to pose a fire hazard.
Ultimately, the type you choose should be based on how you want to use them. Beyond that, a lot depends on what you’re willing to spend. However, if you have a great plan in place, the above guidelines should help you make your decision.
Always Choose a Smokeless Version
Whether you are having an indoor or outdoor event, choosing a smokeless sparkler is always the way to go. Not only do they provide a better performance, they keep the air clean for better photos. Here are some of the reasons you should consider a smokeless option for your celebration.
- Improved Visibility: With less smoke and ash, smokeless versions provide a clearer view of the sparks and the people holding them, making for better photos and memories.
- Healthier Environment: They produce fewer particulates and chemicals, making them a safer option for individuals with respiratory issues or allergies.
- Less Mess: Traditional designs can leave a lot of ash and residue on clothing, skin, and surfaces. Also, they produce less ash, making them easier to clean up and less likely to leave a mess.
- More Versatile: Smokeless sparklers can be used indoors or outdoors without the worry of smoke or ash filling the air.
- Longer Burn Time: Some smokeless versions can last up to 4 minutes, providing a longer lasting effect for special moments and events.
For all these reasons and more, this Alabama wedding sparklers guide endorses smokeless varieties. While it’s true that they are only “virtually smoke-free”, they can be use in any situation; whether it’s indoors or outdoors.
General Takeaways from this Alabama Wedding Sparklers Guide
Hopefully, this Alabama wedding sparklers guide has shown you all the options you have at your disposal. Personally, I dream of having a wedding at the Space and Rocket Center because I’m a giant nerd. However, you will likely have different preferences; and that’s okay! Just follow the things that I’ve outlined above, and you will enhance your day beyond belief. Good luck and thanks for reading!