American Pyrotechnics

Safety & Education Foundation



        Smoke Signals 

          Fireworks Safety & Education News

    April 2019

Jason Trout, President
Ron Zoldan, Vice President
Herb Chan, Secretary

Kurt Cowgill, Treasurer

Please take a few minutes to read this update on the recent and upcoming efforts of the APA's Safety & Education Foundation, activities made possible through the generous donations of our supporters

Foundation Advocates Meet with CPSC Commissioners  

This past March, Foundation President Jason Trout, TNT Fireworks and Vice President Ron Zoldan, Phantom Fireworks, accompanied Advisor Inez Tenenbaum and Executive Director Julie Heckman to meetings with CPSC Commissioners Dana Baiocco and Peter Feldman. The group provided the commissioners with an overview of the Foundation and its ongoing activities to educate youth about fireworks and their safe use. Additionally, they voiced industry appreciation for the Commission embracing the #CelebrateSafely hashtag as a positive alternative to its previously used #FireworksHurt messaging. We're pleased to report that our representatives were well received by the commissioners and that their staff who acknowledged the fireworks industry for supporting the Foundation's educational efforts to promote safety.

                                                    Jason Trout, Ron Zoldan, Inez Tenenbaum, Julie Heckman, Tad Trout

Spreading the Safety Message 

While in the Nation's Capital for the CPSC meetings, the Foundation delegation met with Widmeyer Communications, a firm of strategic communications experts and public policy advocates in PreK-12 education. The purpose of the meeting was to explore possible ways to spread the Foundation's safety message to a broader audience. Widmeyer is the firm that developed the Foundation's educational curriculum and produced the Professor Sparkz video vignettes.

For 2019, Widmeyer has been contracted to produce an additional Prof. Sparkz video stressing the importance of Sparkler Safety. The goal is to complete production of this new video in time to promote during this year's 4th of July season. Widmeyer also offered a number of additional outreach suggestions for Board consideration.

Foundation on the Road 

This past March, Foundation advisor Inez Tenenbaum and Executive Director Julie Heckman, exhibited at the National Afterschool Association's (NAA) conference in New York City, promoting its curriculum and other resources with over 2,000 afterschool professionals dedicated to improving the quality of afterschool programs for youth.

For 2019, the Foundation plans to make presentations and/or exhibit at these upcoming events:

American School Health Association, Cincinnati, OH
Century Community Learning Centers, Evansville, IN
National Association of School Nurses Conference, Denver, CO
National Association of State Fire Marshals, Annapolis, MD
National Fireworks Association Expo, Branson, MO
Pyrotechnics Guild International Convention, Gillette, WY

In the Bag for Safety!

Foundation's safety tips are available through Pyro Novelties. The company has generously offered to make a $1 donation to the Foundation for every case of bags sold and we are most grateful to owner Katherine Guccione for this support. Last year, over $2,500 was raised for the Foundation through sales of these bags.  

Individual cases can be purchased for $45.99 each via their retail online store at this link.

Wholesale cases can be purchased for $34.99 each either via their wholesale online store or by phone at 800-552-3499 (minimum $250 order required to purchase at wholesale prices but you can mix and match with other products on the site to reach the minimum).

Save the Date - Foundation Golf Outing

Plans are in the works for a fun-filled afternoon on the links this coming September during the APA Convention in Naples, Florida. Please reserve the afternoon of Tuesday, September 24 and plan to play 18 holes at the
fabulous Tiburon Golf Course, just steps away from our host hotel, the Ritz Carlton Golf Resort. Look for more details later this Spring, but start practicing your swing now so you can join in on the fun and support a great
cause at the same time!

Board Changes

We're pleased to announce that Jason Trout, TNT Fireworks has been named Foundation President, having previously served as Vice President. Ron Zoldan, Phantom Fireworks was elected to fill the position of Vice President. Herb Chan, United Pyrotechnics and Kurt Cowgill, North Central Industries will remain in their current positions as Secretary and Treasurer for another year.

Two Board Directors Tad Trout, TNT Fireworks and Stephen Vitale, Pyrotecnico, had expiring terms and were recognized during the APA Winter Conference for their guidance and involvement with the Foundation since its inception.

The Foundation wishes to express its sincere gratitude to outgoing President Kevin Gilfillan, Pyro Spectaculars, for his time and energies in leading the Foundation this past year. He will remain on the Board as Past President.


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