Riverfest Fireworks to be Replaced with Exploding Bottles of Hand Sanitizer


LA CROSSE, WIS — The Fourth of July celebrations will look drastically different in La Crosse this year. What is usually a week of outdoor fun in the sun at the volunteer-driven, self-funded annual Riverfest event has turned into just another hot and humid summer week after the fest’s cancellation. Another punch to the gut for La Crosse area people was the cancellation of the area’s biggest fireworks display brilliantly put on by The La Crosse Skyrockers.    

Saturday morning, The La Crosse Times learned the fireworks display is back on with one major modification to the show that will help audiences stay safe: The fireworks will now be replaced with exploding bottles of hand sanitizer. 

“We feel that this is the best option that combines safety with entertainment,” explained fireworks event coordinator Roy Hobbs. “The exploding bottles will serve two purposes: to provide La Crosse with the annual fireworks entertainment it desires, and to give the entire La Crosse area a nice gentle superficial cleansing.” 

Hobbs assures people that the bottles of sanitizer will still explode in a brilliant display of glowing lights and patterns as the bottles have been laced with the radiant exploding powders used in normal fireworks. Also as an extra added bonus, the sanitizer will have a gentle aloe vera scent to the show that will help prevent skin from cracking. 

Hobbs added a warning to people that the showering of hand sanitizer over the entire city will come with some inherent risks. 

“I’m anticipating it will kill almost all the plants in the area, but it’s a risk people are willing to take to watch a fireworks show,” Hobbs warned. “Also people need to make sure all small cuts, scrapes, and eyes are covered because that stuff will sting!” 

When asked what the effects of breathing in the sanitizer may have on lungs, Hobbs added that he’s not a doctor but hopefully it will “kill COVID right in people’s lungs before it gets out of em.”  

The sanitizer fireworks display, sponsored by Purell, will start at 9 pm. 

Reporter Dr. Jonathan H. Dong contributed to this article.