*District of Columbia: Anything that just makes smoke, has a side or bottom-mounted fuse, resembles an illegal item, moves when ignited or makes a loud noise is prohibited. The maximum penalty is $300 and 10 days in jail.

*ountains, "Pharoah's serpents" and caps for pistols and pinwheels. However Arlington, Fairfax and Prince William counties and Fairfax City review the array of firecrackers each year and publish a list of legal explosives. Lists are available through fire marshals' offices. Virtually everything that has a "visible or audible effect" or has more than .5 grains of explosive material is outlawed in Alexandria, according to Tom Flynn, assistant fire marshal. The maximum penalty, set by state law, for possession of illegal fireworks is a $1,000 fine and a year in prison.

*Maryland: Only sparklers that carry a gold label are legal under Maryland state law, but Prince George's and Montgomery counties and Baltimore outlaw even those. The state's minimum fine for possession of illegal fireworks is $250, while Montgomery County has a civil fee of $250 for a first offense and $500 for a subsequent offense. Prince George's and Montgomery counties also have criminal penalties of up to a $1,000 fine and six months in prison.