L'International des Feux Loto-Québec (Montreal Fireworks Festival)

L'International des Feux Loto-Québec (Montreal Fireworks Festival)
Photo: internationaldesfeuxlotoquebec.com
L'International des Feux Loto-Québec, also referred to as the Montreal Fireworks Festival, is one of the world’s largest and most prestigious fireworks festivals. It has been held every summer since 1985. The festival is named after its main sponsor, Loto-Québec. Loto-Québec is a provincial government corporation that operates lotteries, casinos and other games of chance in Quebec in an orderly and measured way.

Formerly known as Le Mondial SAQ and L'International Benson & Hedges, L'International des Feux Loto-Québec takes place at La Ronde, an amusement park in Montreal owned and operated by Six Flags. It is a highly regarded international fireworks competition that features around 8 pyrotechnical companies from around the world. Over the years, the festival has welcomed participants from Canada, France, Spain, Italy, Japan, the United States, Germany, Switzerland, China, Australia, Portugal, the United Kingdom, Croatia, the Netherlands, and other countries.

Each company presents a half and hour long pyromusical show, competing for one of the three trophies – Gold Jupiter, Silver Jupiter and Bronze Jupiter. In 2004, the festival celebrated its 20th anniversary. That year, eight Gold Jupiter winners from the previous competitions participated in a competition for the unique Platinum Jupiter. The award was won by the German pyrotechnical company WECO.

L'International des Feux Loto-Québec is a series of biweekly fireworks displays that usually begins in late June and runs through late July. The performances take place on Wednesdays and on Saturdays. The participants present pyromusical shows, which means that the fireworks are synchronized to music. A provincial radio station broadcasts the music so that everyone can hear it well. The festival opens with an opening show and closes with a tribute to a famous performer or band.

The fireworks are shot on Saint Helen’s Island in the Saint Lawrence River. Spectators who prefer to have reserved seats in La Ronda can purchase tickets in advance. However, most spectators watch the fireworks for free from one of nearby locations, including elsewhere on Saint Helen’s Island, the Old Port of Montreal, the Jacques Cartier Bridge, along the Saint Lawrence River, and even the city of Longueuil.

Approximately 6,000 fireworks are set off during each show. Spectacular displays draw about 3 million spectators each year, which makes the Montreal Fireworks Festival one of the largest festivals in Canada.

Montreal Fireworks Festival

Photo: Michael Vesia



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