Fireworks to mark Chinese New Year

The sky will ignite Saturday night with the cheerful thunder and colourful lightning of the Year of the Pig.

Each blast of fireworks over Lheidli T'enneh Memorial Park will call out gong hei fat choy and gong xi fa cai to celebrate the lunar new year celebrated in China, one of B.C.'s oldest and richest international connections.

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The Exploration Place is the annual headquarters for the Chinese New Year celebrations, with a sky-burst going off at 8 p.m. designed by the fireworks team at Starlight FX.

"They always go above and beyond for us, because Chinese New Year is so connected to fireworks and that's what they do best," said Tracy Calogheros, CEO of The Exploration Place. It was in China that fireworks were invented in about the ninth century A.D. Bamboo stalks stuffed with gunpowder would be thrown into fires to give off entertaining blasts of colour, and the tradition is still alive and well around the world.

A party (almost sold out) will be going on inside The Exploration Place at the same time. One of their Way Late Play-Date events is set to coincide with the fireworks show.

Anyone with a ticket can enjoy the spectacle inside the city's primary museum and science centre, and also take part in the evening's affairs.

"We have a prohibition theme for this party," said Calogheros.

"With the legalization of marijuana, that concept has been brought to the top of the public's mind, so we thought it would be fun to look back at the Roaring '20s era. People love the fashion of that period, it was all about great suits and great dresses and great music."

Participants will be "snuck" into Exploration Place as though it were an old after-hours speakeasy.

Once inside there will be prohibition-themed cocktails and a casino atmosphere with skill-based party games like darts, building card towers, giant Jenga, the use of the museum's vintage pool table, and more.

Participants for the party must be 19-plus to attend. Contact The Exploration Place for ticket inquiries.

All ages and walks of life are welcome to position themselves at the park (or anywhere with a view) to see the Chinese New Year's fireworks, free of charge.

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