AlliedNews.com - Grove City, Pennsylvania

August 28, 2013

Jaws drop with eyes trained on the skies

By Monica Pryts/Staff Writer
Allied News

BUTLER COUNTY — Jaws were dropping as spectators of all ages had their eyes on the sky for nearly two hours straight Wednesday night, letting out cries of amazement as blast after blast produced a world-class fireworks show that had the crowd cheering.

The 2013 Pyrotechnics Guild International Convention, presented by the Butler County Tourism and Convention Bureau, was held this week at Cooper's Lake Campground, Worth Township, and featured four nights of shows open to the public, food, live music and a number of events for PGI members.

Billed as "Boom and a Blast," the annual convention played host to more than 2,000 PGI members from all over the world, including Jack Cohen, president of the bureau, who joined the guild about five years ago to help convince PGI to hold the event in Butler County.

"It's been great. The community supports it," he said shortly before Wednesday's show started.

He had the chance to shoot off his own shells on Tuesday and has had such a great experience he's already invited PGI to host its convention in Butler County again in the near future.

"We're going to get them to come back," Cohen said, adding it's been easy to see the event has been an all-around success.

Marty Rombach of Cranberry Township, who brought his whole family, said he thought it was worth noting that the convention is fun for all ages.

"It's a fabulous family affair. I'm so excited about it," he said.

His young granddaughters, Allison, 5, and Abigail, 6, were so excited for the show to start and could hardly sit still.

But it didn't take long for the booms and the blasts to captivate the girls and the rest of the crowd, as fireworks were lit from a nearby hillside, sending displays of all sizes, shapes, colors and sounds into the darkening sky.

Most of the displays were set to music, which could hardly be  heard over some of the louder fireworks, which fizzled as they appeared to rain down over the crowd, the smoke settling across the campgrounds.

Wednesday's show included displays from: the Junior Pyrotechnics Association members, ages 7 through 17; Celebration Fireworks and PA Pyrotechnics Artists; and Pyrotecnico of New Castle.

Quite a few people in Wednesday's crowd attended shows earlier in the week and had planned on going to the last public display on Friday.

Published Aug. 17, 2013, in Allied News. Pick up a copy at 201 A Erie St., Grove City.