September President Report

The PGI Board of Directors sends representatives to National Fireworks Association, NFA, and to the American Pyrotechnics Association, APA conventions.  Last week the APA held its convention in San Antonio. TX and the week before the NFA was in Erie, PA.  I attended both on behalf of the PGI and our 1st VP John Steinberg joined me for the APA convention.

First, let me say how proud I was to realize the PGI overwhelmingly outperformed both these other groups.  It was a bit eerie at the NFA Expo and not because it was in Erie, PA. You looked around and wondered where many of the folks were that you often saw at their convention.  It still was a productive time there, but I realize they were down 30-40% in attendance.  The APA convention was also down 30-40% and it made me very grateful for the strong support our members gave to our 2021 convention in Fargo.  Thank you for attending. And for those who could not attend thanks for remaining members this year and supporting the PGI with your membership.

These two conventions the NFA and APA were a great time for networking and seeing how fellow pyrotechnic organizations are handling some of the same challenges we face. I will be saying more about what I learned in future updates. What I can tell you now is the PGI is making real progress in having an impact on several different areas. 

Dr. Steinberg and I had several informative and beneficial discussions with the upcoming President of the APA, Stephen Pelkey the CEO of  Atlas PyroVision Entertainment Group, Inc. Later this year I will announce some of what we are working on to make a PGI membership of greater value. This will deal with online training and the availability of information about fireworks safety and regulations.

I was also able to meet and have several good discussions with the new Executive Director of the AFSL the American Fireworks Safety Lab who tests the 1.4 products before they leave China.  Last year you may remember we were concerned about a new restriction being considered by the CPSC Consumer Products Safety Commission and the AFSL was not on the same page with our thinking. The new Executive Director, Jay Howell is aware of this situation and is much more in agreement with our thinking on how to approach restrictions that may be considered.  He sees the PGI as a group wanting to promote fireworks safety but not with adding more and more regulations.  He is tentatively planning on attending our convention in Newton, IA which will be the first time any of the AFSL group has attended in many years.

If you have any questions send them along to president@pgi.org.

Speaking of Newton, IA, the PGI and several key chairs are heading there this weekend to continue working on all the details for next year’s convention.  We are making sure all the details we need are available for this new site.  Next month I will send along how things progressed in this fall planning meeting.

On behalf of the PGI Board,

Paul