Non-USA Dopers: What and when is your fireworks holiday?

Having recently celebrated our glorious 4th of July got me to wondering: When do non-USA countries shoot off their fireworks?

Well, July 1 is Canada Day, but in Quebec we also have June 24, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day. The city usually puts on a fireworks show on both of those nights.

However, in Montreal, you see, we’re rather spoiled. We have an international fireworks competition every year, which means we get fireworks at least once a week for most of the summer. Since it’s a competition, the shows are usually spectacular.

There are local organized fireworks shows for all kinds of events but the only day with fireworks throughout the country is New Year’s Eve. It’s also the only day when ordinary people set off fireworks.

You know, even in the US there are local firweworks holidays. Utah always has a big display for Pioneer Day on July 24.

Israel – Independence Day is our “fireworks” holiday just like the US. Of course it falls on a different date… (normally late April / Early May)

Guy Fawkes night aka Bonfire Night – 5th of November, here’s the inevitable wikipedia article The rhyme they have there (the 'remember, remember part) doesn’t seem quite right to me but I’ve not said it since I was a kid. The article is spot on but I’ve never heard it described as ‘Plot Night’.

India has Diwali (or Deepavali), the festival of lights; usually in November.

Australia has the Queen’s Birthday weekend, which falls around the second weekend in June. Well, it used to. In most places, the nanny state banned fireworks for personal use, unless you want to go through a tedious permit process, only to be able to buy some meagre little fizzers. The “cracker nights” I remember as a kid, where people used to set off fireworks in their backyards, are a distant memory now. Fireworks displays now tend to be huge, commercial city affairs, normally held on New Year’s Eve.


In most of Spain, anything that takes place in the summer, plus new year’s, plus any time city hall feels like paying for it, plus any time there’s a big soccer match. Some people send up fireworks every time their team scores.

And if you’re in Valencia, any time at all. Birthdays, first communions, getting a pass grade in a midterm, getting a pass grade in an essay, getting a fail but it wasn’t too bad, weddings, funerals, family meetings, and in general any time, including 3 in the freaking am.

I swear, those WoW goblin engineers got nothing on a proper Valenciano. Makes one wonder how did they have any kind of celebration pre-gunpowder.

Germany - New Year’s Eve (31.12.), called Silvester (a half-holiday in almost all workplaces, i.e. you work until noon then head home to prepare for the party). The strictly canonical time to fire one’s fireworks is at the stroke of midnight but impatient youths (and families with kids too young to stay up until midnight) begin in the afternoon. Both rockets and firecrackers are used. The public sale of fireworks is only allowed in the last three days of the year (except for a class of low-power fireworks approved by a federal agency abbreviated, somewhat fittingly, BAM)
Silvester* evening is party time; large quantities of Sekt and Berliners are consumed. Canonical TV fare is Dinner for One.
New Year (1 January) is a full holiday of more solemn-ish character, suitable for sleeping in and nursing one’s hangover.

My brother’s in Romania for the Peace Corp and based on his reports a generous amount of time around New Year’s is a big fireworks time there. When I was talking to him on the phone, it sounded like artillery was being fired between the apartment blocks.

And like Nava 's report of Valencia, 3 a.m. is a popular time to set them off.

Guy Fawkes is the big one, as with the UK. Perishing nuisance it is too. I’m in favour of public displays for communal events than this business of letting off fireworks in your next-to-nothing backyard.

We also have displays on New Years’ Eve, but that isn’t a “fireworks holiday”.

Nor have I, but the rhyme (at any rate, the first four lines) is word for word as I learned it.

We also celebrate the Queen’s birthday with fireworks in Canada.

Queen Victoria’s birthday that is. The Monday on, or just prior to, May 24. I assume we chose this date because it’s close to, and every so often aligned with, Memorial Day in the States.

In India, Diwali aside, new year’s eve, weddings, and pretty much any big event. We likes our fireworks here.

To be picky, Guy Fawkes is not a “holiday” as such. Nobody takes the day off work and none of the shops or banks are closed.

Ireland: Hallowe’en.

(And the two months before :mad: and after :mad::mad: And they save a load up for New Year too. Ironic, considering they’re illegal.)

I’ve always wanted to be in the UK for Guy Fawkes Day, ever since I learned about the fireworks & all, as it’s my birthday. Kinda like how some people get married on July 4th here, so they get a fireworks display every year on their anniversary.

…says the woman whose anniversary is Feb. 14, so every year on her anniversary she can count on difficulty getting a dinner reservation & flower shortages and/or inflated prices. Romantic - :smack:

The Netherlands have fireworks only on New Year’s Eve. We celebrate it the same way as our neighbours, the Germans, do.

So, what tschild and kellner said.

Of course, tomorrow is Bastille day, where I imagine lots of fireworks will be set off.