Fireworks(picture by kristen kaiser)(words by nick callanan)
It took them a while, but the crowd of people gathered around The Marshall Hotel in The Forks on July 6 finally realized what a great
show they were watching. You see, at first, these folks weren’t cheering wildly for the loud and sparkling explosions set off that night
from the intersection point of the Dead and Kennebec Rivers. One group of unappreciative teenagers behind me even mocked, “Ha!
That was probably it!” after each of the first six fireworks barrages.
But, no, that wasn’t it. The fireworks show, sponsored by The Marshall, Magic Falls and Crab Apple, lasted almost half an hour and used up over 400 rounds of explosive, according to “Rafting” Randy Porier of Central Maine Pyrotechnics, the company that orchestrated the show.
In the aftermath of the fireworks, many people were impressed.
“I was at the show in Camden on the 4th, and this one was way better,” said Mark, from Camden.
A man from Lincoln said, “They were a lot longer than I expected. I even had to go back for another beer in the middle.”
Randy, from Moscow, said Central Maine Pyrotechnics generally does fireworks shows down in the southern part of the state. But, he added, “I’d been wanting to do a show close to home for years.”
After getting the sponsorship money, close to $3000, Randy “put his heart and soul” into the July 6 show, working five full days to get everything just right. He and his sons made several passes from The Ball field to Crusher Pool in their raft on Saturday to drop off supplies, before they finally parked it for good in the cove just upriver of the point at dusk.
The show started at about 9:30 p.m. and the explosions were launched in three directions: upstream, downstream and straight up. People lined up all along the river bank, from the bridge to down past The Marshall, to watch the show.
Randy talked a little bit about the technical aspects of the different explosions. “The big bangs are called ‘Reports,’ while the colorful ones are called ‘Salutes.’ Then there’s the ‘Spider Web’ explosions” that span out to look like spider webs, he said.
To many folks the show seemed wicked loud. Randy attributed this to the fact that his launching point was “tucked right in the valley,” causing thunderous acoustics.
Pyrotechnic fans, if 2002’s show wasn’t enough, you should be excited to hear 2003’s show is already in the works. “It’ll be on Saturday the 5th …and definitely [expect] a bigger show next year!” said Randy.
Now that people have an idea what to expect, the hollering, screaming and ooh-ing and ahh-ing will probably start right when the fireworks do.
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