For many the highlight, both literally and figuratively, to their Canada Day celebrations are the fireworks displays that finish off the day’s festivities.
And for years in Chestermere, the man behind the magic is Brad Dezotell and his Calgary based company Fireworks Spectaculars Canada Ltd.
“The beauty of fireworks is they’re magical,” said Dezotell.
“They’re something that is there and is gone just as fast as it’s there and it leaves an impression with you,” he said.
The company, which produces fireworks shows across the country, tends to start work designing and scripting the Canada Day shows in mid-April.
“That’s to be able to put together 35 of them,” he said.
Each individual show can take from just a couple of days to a couple weeks to plan depending on the size and complexity of the show. It also depends on what parameters the city or organization has set for the show.
Dezotell said that those parameters generally include where the shows being shot from, how it’s being shot and the length.
“For Chestermere on Canada Day, several years ago we began shooting the show out on…a barge, if you will, in the lake,” he said. “So, they set those parameters.”
When it comes to the colours, styles and effects Dezotell and his team of experts design that.
“As far as the actual design of the show. That’s what we do.
“They hire us to do the show and we produce the show completely,” he said.
And it’s something they are pretty good at having won 14 different competitions for fireworks design.
“We’re one of the most awarded fireworks companies in the Country,” said Dezotell.
Although Canada Day in Chestermere isn’t one of the competitions, Dezotell said they consistently receive only positive feedback about the fireworks displays.
“From our end its been nothing but positive over the years,” he said.
One of the unique, and Dezotell thinks, magical aspects of a fireworks show is the impression it leaves on a person.
He said that people often can remember the great fireworks shows they’ve seen and the impression it left without necessarily remembering all the individual effects in the show.
“The recollection of exactly what effects were in a show is not actually that strong,” said Dezotell.
“It’s just hey I had a great experience at this fireworks show and it’s a great fireworks show,” he said. “That’s what people see, that’s part of the magic of fireworks.”
Along with Canada Day here in Chestermere, Fireworks Spectaculars also produces the Water Festival and Winter Lights Festival fireworks displays.
All three shows are launched from the same location out on the lake, two from a barge and one show on the ice.
The location on the lake provides some added safety and the benefit of a good view of the show from all sides.
Working from the barge allows Dezotell and his team to bring some of what the have learned producing shows on both the East and West coast back home.
“We do shoot a multitude of shows off barges every year in fact across the country there is high percentage of shows that are shot off of barges,” he said.
“It is unique in Western Canada, we just aren’t blessed with an ocean, we’re not blessed with large lakes and that kind of stuff,” said Dezotell.