How To Throw A Sustainable Fireworks Party
Any reason to introduce some light and cheer into the darker months is welcome: from Bonfire Night to Thanksgiving, read on for our guide to keeping your party as sustainable as possible.
FIREWORKS AND FLAMES
Ancient Chinese dynasties to early US settlers experimented with explosives in an attempt to light up the sky. The methods behind today’s modern fireworks remain very similar to the techniques which have been used for millennia, but we now know exploding fireworks shower tiny metal particulates, smoke and chemicals across the local area. Military scientists are working to develop cleaner fireworks (the US Army has a Pyrotechnics Technology and Prototyping Division, believe it or not), but in the meantime, there are ways to source more eco-friendly fireworks…
GO ALL-WHITE FOR SPARKLES…
White fireworks are thought to contain less chemicals than their coloured counterparts, and ground-mounted fireworks like Catherine Wheels are less likely to spew out debris than rockets which are launched into the air. But rather than set up your own bonfire or firework display – which entails grappling with branches, logs and the like – why not take your guests to the park and cosy up around a shared bonfire and fireworks display? Less carbon output, no fuss, more mutual merriment.
MAKE THE MOST OF IT
It’s cold, your guests will potentially be outside for part of the evening, so serving up hearty fare is a must. Stews and bakes are a simple option which will keep your guests toasty. Double up on quantities of this kale, spinach and ricotta stuffed pasta recipe (and make use of all the greens lingering in your fridge) to keep your friends well-nourished while they’re ‘ooh-ing’ and ‘ahh-ing’ at the spectacles outside. For afters, transform any sad-looking leftover brown bananas in your kitchen into a sweet, rich chocolately loaf to carve up between your guests. We’ll also serve a seasonal cocktail – #brandtotrust Hennessy’s Fall’n for You cocktail is our warming, apple-and-cinnamon infused tipple of choice.
Bonfire Night is notorious for leaving a trail of discarded sparklers, firework debris and plastic packaging in its wake. Rather than buy disposable plates and utensils, serve your guests using your own crockery (which looks far prettier, anyhow) and use metal or wooden utensils to keep your party’s plastics use low. Outside, if you want to set off sky lanterns, make sure you pick biodegradable products, as the metal in traditional lanterns can fall to earth and tangle up wild animals.
BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU BURN
If you do decide to set up your own pyre in the back garden, keep it all-natural. Stick to dry leaves, branches, discarded cardboard and logs; burning anything synthetic can set off seriously noxious fumes. And whatever you do, make sure you’ve checked through the bonfire before you light it to ensure all things tiny – cats, hedgehogs – are well out of the way.