WBIR opted to move their telecast of Boomsday closer to the action this year. Previously, the station put its anchors outside Baptist Hospital, which is now closed. On Monday night, Robin Wilhoit and John Becker were positioned on a Southern Shores barge in the middle of the Tennessee River.
The staff at Pyro Shows puts a little extra oomph into the Boomsday fireworks. Their headquarters is in nearby LaFollette and they use Knoxville as their “test market” for the world-class shows they do in Washington, DC and other major cities.
The barge provided a front-row seat. I was especially enthralled with the straight-on perspective of the shells that exploded under the surface of the water. Of course, my photos are nothing compared to the gallery at knoxnews.com but they will remind me of the great view I had.
My wife and I saw some commotion as we walked to our car. Drops of flaming oil were falling from the engine of a white Range Rover at the intersection of Main and Walnut. I called 911. The operator told me they already had a report just as I could hear sirens in the distance. A police officer with a small fire extinguisher put out the sparks a couple of different times while I watched.