3 years after the idea was originally put forward and 2 years after the host nation was chosen Singapore finally sees the start of the Youth Olympic Games with a grand opening ceremony that included a spectacular fireworks display.
3,600 contestants aged between 14 and 18 will battle it out for gold in 26 different sports with representatives from 204 different countries. This is the Olympics after all.
Of course, just like the normal Olympics, the best part is the opening ceremony because there are fireworks!
The very brave, talented and yes quite possibly stupid, Justino Zoppe!
His remarkable juggling skills have shot him to the top of stardom and now he has sealed his destiny as one of the most memorable acts in history by juggling fireworks!!
We must stress again, do not attempt to do this yourself, this is extremely dangerous and should only be performed by trained professionals wearing proper protective clothing and under the supervision of safety experts.
Justino is hailed as the original and only fireworks juggler, who even has a US patent to stop others attempting the same stunt. Who would want to attempt the same stunt eludes me but he is secure in the states that no one else can.
Party goers in Perpignan in France had a nasty surprise at some new health and safety rules this Bastille Day.
The yearly Fire Run event which attracts thousands of spectators and participants was unable to enjoy the usual frantic firework fun as bureaucratic Brussels decided that there should be a 15 Metres (that’s about 50 feet imperial) gap between the crowd and the pyro.
The tradition is for Catalonians dressed like devils and demons to run amok with their fireworks.
Stephane Martin is from the Catalan Devils and Demons Federation, he went all the way to Brussels on Wednesday to personally protest against the safety regulations and to ask for a special cultural exemption. Spain already has said exemption but the far smaller Catalan population in France is having to battle hard to win the right to be dangerous with fireworks.
Oriole Junqueras, a Spanish Catalan MEP, has taken up the cause in France. “We have been doing this for centuries without danger or injuries. Our traditions are under threat,” he said
We all understand the need to be safe with fireworks and it is important to ensure the safety of people at such events. However, the events have been going on for longer than anyone who attends them has been alive. Surely anyone who goes should understand any risks they are taking and make their own decision whether to go or not.
Tradition has to be preserved, it is part of the culture and important to make a community feel like a community. We hope a happy compromise can be reached and the Catalan people can enjoy their traditions.