Finding a fun, creative way to reveal the gender of your baby to your family and friends is one of the great joys of being new parents. Sometimes, however, those creative gender reveals go horribly wrong. (On the up side, baby gender reveal fails are almost always hilarious.) One couple in Nebraska recently caused a stir with their rather, ahem, explosive gender reveal.

Ashley and John Sterkel chose to reveal their baby's gender by blowing up a target that emitted a huge cloud of blue smoke. (It's a boy. Sorry for the spoiler.)


While Ashley and John were cheering, their neighbors were freaking out about an explosion in the area. The Scotts Bluff County Sheriff's Office got a number of calls from concerned residents.

The Sterkels were oblivious to the panic their baby gender reveal caused until they later heard a report about an explosion in the area on a local radio station, and then started seeing some of the reactions of their neighbors on Facebook. (The Omaha World-Herald reports that those reactions ranged from "awesome" to "it scared the dog.")

That's when John Sterkel called the Sheriff's Office to explain what happened. Turns out setting off an explosive without the proper state permit (even if those explosives can be purchased legally in stores without a permit) is actually a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and a $1000 fine. Yikes. The sheriff has also said that Sterkel is cooperating and that there were no injuries or property damage as a result of the couple's explosive baby gender reveal.


Sterkel also took to Facebook to comment on the explosion. "I would like to apologize for all of the confusion," he wrote, according to the Omaha World-Herald. “This was just our way of announcing what gender our baby was.”

We have a feeling the Sterkels might choose a slightly more subtle way to announce the actual birth of their baby.