Competing teams from Japan, the U.K. and Canada set to light up the skies above Metro Vancouver for the 27th annual Honda Celebration of Light. - IMAGE CREDIT: Facebook/Celebration of Light

Canada, Japan and U.K. set to light up Vancouver sky

Teams from Japan, the U.K. and Canada set to light up the skies above Vancouver for the 27th annual Honda Celebration of Light.

Boats will fill the harbour and beaches will be packed as Canada, Japan and the U.K. battle it out at the 27th-annual Honda Celebration of Light.

Organizers announced this year’s competing countries on Tuesday, set to light up the skies above English Bay on July 29, Aug. 2nd and Aug. 5. Showing off their best pyrotechnics in front of a crowd of about 400,000.

Teams from Japan and the U.K. have agreed to take on the home team in the world’s longest-running offshore fireworks competition.

“The Honda Celebration of Light sparks togetherness and celebrates the spirit of our city as Vancouver’s premier event,” said Paul Tilbury, co-chair of the Vancouver Fireworks Festival Society.

This year, organizers will also participate in Canada’s 150th birthday with a limited online contest in the lead-up to the festival, as well as a brand-new focus on live musical entertainment that celebrates Canada’s heritage.

“In Vancouver, we’re used to welcoming the world, because this is where the world wants to be. Every year, one of the most spectacular highlights – literally – is the Honda Celebration of Light. It’s a great show, a major draw for tourists, and an important economic driver. I can’t think of a better or more appropriate way to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday,” said Premier Christy Clark.

Organizers say Vancouverites can spend their afternoons soaking in the sun with thousands of fellow festival-goers, listening to energetic and soulful live musical performances.

“With over 1 Million spectators last year, the Honda Celebration of Light continues to be one of our best-known and most popular summer festivals,” said Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson.

“Celebrating 27 years in Vancouver, this signature summer event showcases our city on the world stage and is a huge boost to our vibrant local economy.”

As an added bonus for Canada’s 150th birthday, participating pyro teams will each be required to include one iconic Canadian song in the musical accompaniment to their fireworks display.

A song that will be chosen by the public.

Festival organizers are inviting members of the public to log onto the Honda Celebration of Light Facebook page between today and April 2 to vote for their favourite quintessentially Canadian tune.

The winning song will be announced early April, and then the teams will get to work incorporating it in their performance.

Event details:

  • July 29: AKARIYA Fireworks, representing Japan
  • Aug. 2: Jubilee Fireworks, representing the United Kingdom
  • Aug. 5: Royal Pyrotechnie, representing Canada
    • At promptly 10:00 p.m. each night, rain or shine, the fireworks will begin from barges located in English Bay.

Music simulcast can be heard on LG 104.3 FM and through the festival’s mobile app.

The winning team will be announced Aug. 8, 2017.

For more information about the fireworks, tickets and exclusive seating areas to enjoy the show, click here.

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