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Wetzel Pyrotechnics

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Owner Kevin Wetzel and employee Mark Tedder prepping products for use at the Iredell County fairgrounds in support of the Carolina Pyro's and Iredell County Emergency Services Community Day in support of the Firefighters Burned Children Fund.

 

Kevin Wetzel is the Owner of Wetzel Pyrotechnics, specializing in traditional fireworks displays and providing training for first responders. And they are only in their second year of operation!


Can you describe your business?

Wetzel Pyrotechnics provides several services, including traditional fireworks displays.

Once of the most successful areas of the company is providing training for pyrotechnics, incident response, hazardous materials training to law enforcement, Federal Government customers, local municipalities, fire and EMS.

In fact we provided more training in the past year than fireworks displays.

In addition to fireworks, safety courses and training, we also provide consulting services to the motion picture associations, special effects production teams and support the Pyrotechnics Guild International and ASEPO (Alliance of Special Effects & Pyrotechnic Operators).

 

Can you talk about the decision to start your own business?

The driving force behind starting the business was the fact that more and more municipalities are having to hire pyrotechnics companies to put on their 4th of July displays due to changes after the Ocracoke Island fireworks accident that occurred in 2009.

Prior to the accident, many towns and municipalities did their own fireworks for holidays. After the accident occurred, the rules and regulations changed at the state level and many towns were no longer able to put on their own display.

We started this business venture because there was a need to provide safety training, displays and to engage with first responders to prevent another tragedy such as what occurred in 2009.

 

Why do you do what you do?

I love hearing crowds cheer at our displays. If we can put a smile on people's faces and make them forget—even for a few minutes—about the worries of the world, we've done a good job.

 

Why did you choose Currituck County?

The people of Currituck County love fireworks. I chose to keep my business close to where I live so that I could form relationships with others that have like interest in fireworks, safety and hazardous materials handling.

 

Are you from Currituck or did you relocate here?

I relocated to Currituck from Raleigh in 2017 to get away from the traffic.

 

Did you consider other locations (besides Currituck) for your business?

I did consider other locations and have much of our operations elsewhere even today. Due to zoning and some other issue, it is not possible to really do what we do in Currituck.

 

What are your biggest challenges as a business owner?

Our biggest challenge as a business owner is finding undesired land so that we can store our products safely and legally.

 

What are the biggest rewards?

Again the biggest reward from the business is making people forget about their worries and helping fire and EMS to keep certifications current and to provide training to ensure people dealing with fireworks do things as safely as possible.

 

What will people get from your business that they won't get anywhere else?

The one thing we do differently is provide as many different effects in our displays as possible. We don't like boring fireworks shows.

We do fireworks scripted to music to keep things different and unique. Each one of these "pyro-musical" displays is different and can be set to anything from Frank Sinatra to AC/DC for example. We love music and we love fireworks so we have put the two together to keep our attendees engaged and to keep things upbeat.

 

What's one piece of advice you would give to someone starting a business in Currituck County?

I would highly recommend working with the various organizations in Currituck that have started a business before you.

Contact SCORE and get a mentor. Retired business owners were in the same position when they started their own businesses.


Watch a Wetzel Pyrotechnics display from July 2019 in Moyock

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Contact Info

Moyock, NC 27958

Website

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