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Oct 11, 2009

Fireworks Display at Diwali Festival

Display location:Sri Ganesha Temple
City:South Jordan
Date: Oct. 16

Details: Retailers, take note: There's an upcoming Hindu holiday that is like Christmas, New Year's, Hanukkah, Thanksgiving and the Fourth of July rolled into one.

It's Diwali, or the Festival of Lights, which Utah Hindus will celebrate Oct. 16 at the Sri Ganesha Temple in South Jordan.

That means scores of Indian Americans will be caught up in a frenzy of shopping, buying new clothes, Asian delicacies and plenty of fireworks. They deep-clean their houses from top to bottom, then decorate the porch with fragrant flower and mango leaf garlands and special fabrics marked with huge Rangoli designs to welcome Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth.

Diwali commemorates the triumph of Lord Krishna over the demon who personifies all of life's ills, explains Indra Neelameggham, a leader among the state's Hindus. On a practical level, it signifies the end of ignorance and heralds the coming of prosperity and joy into everyone's lives.

"It is a festival of splendor, brightness and happiness," she says. "Every home and business is illuminated with deeps -- oil lamps -- and every heart is filled with joy."

At dawn, the eldest woman of the house, usually a grandmother, distributes the gifts and a sweetmeat. Family members take special baths, mirroring bathing in India's holy Ganges River. The family then will light sparklers and fireworks, Neelameggham says, to celebrate the coming of a new day.

For Indian business executives, Diwali marks the end of the fiscal year. Old accounts are settled, new books are opened.

On this day, people purchase something for the house or jewelry for the women. It is auspicious to buy something metallic, such as silver.

Sneha Kumar Kasera lights his porch and every room in his Salt Lake City house with lamps.

"That's welcoming Lakshmi into our home," says Kasera, a computer-science professor at the University of Utah. "It's welcoming a new year and welcoming prosperity."

South Jordan resident Hari Selvaraj, his wife, Roopa, and two children enjoy Diwali's social traditions.

"We exchange gifts with 10 other families in the Hindu community," Selvaraj says. "We give them sweets and they give us sweets. It's a happy time of year."

Selvaraj, a software programmer, came to Utah from southern India about 10 years ago. Back home, Diwali also is a time when the latest Bollywood films are released, he says. People always wonder which movies will come out at that time of year.

In his area, on Diwali, people build a giant effigy of the demon, then hang it from a tree. In the evening, they burn it.

"This is the story of the liberation of all good people," he says. "I have taught it to my children and they know it well."

Most American Hindus try to phone home on that day, sometimes clogging up the system.

Though there are dozens of Hindu celebrations throughout the year, Diwali is the biggest.

"We might sometimes miss one of the other ones," Selvaraj says, "but we'd never miss Diwali. The temple will be packed."

Fireworks show and festivities set for torch relay

Display location:Maffeo-Sutton Park
Country: Canada
Date:Oct. 31
Event Website:

Details: Nanaimo's Maffeo-Sutton Park will soon be thrust onto the international stage and community members are welcome to join the party.

Thousands of people will spill into the city's downtown core as the Olympic torch relay finishes its second day in Maffeo-Sutton Park on Oct. 31. The event is only three weeks away but it has been a year in planning and the decorations are just going up. Hannah King, the city's marketing and communications specialist, is feeling the Olympic vibe and hopes others are feeling the same excitement for this "once-in-a-lifetime experience."

Crews have decorated Nanaimo's Third Street corridor and Maffeo-Sutton Park with 268 Olympic torch relay banners. The final relay athlete will arrive in the park by 8 p.m. to light the cauldron.

A gala event for the community is planned for the evening, with festivities at 5:30 p.m. in the park. Children will be able to trick-or-treat at a series of kiosks while entertainers perform on the Lion's Pavilion.

The focus will switch to the main stage at 5:45 p.m. Pamela Martin will be the night's emcee as CTV News broadcasts the 6 p.m. news live from the park.

There will also be a fireworks display at 9 p.m. over the harbourfront.

"This is going to be a huge event for Nanaimo and our community. Eyes from around the world are going to be on us," said King.

"It's too bad it's happening on Halloween because it can be a bit of a challenge to get people there but we hope people will come as a family. Not only is this a once-in-a-lifetime event but how cool is it to have fireworks in October? You can trick or treat any year but to be a part of the event is going to be one-time deal."

For information, go to or call 250-756-5200.

Fireworks Display at Barry Island

Display location: Barry Island
Date:7.45p.m on November 5

Details: FINAL preparations are being made for this year’s Fireworks Fiesta at Barry Island, organised by the Rotary Club of Barry.

Complaints that last year’s display was not as long as usual have been were taken seriously and this year a full 20-minute spectacular is promised.

The display is scheduled to start at the resort at 7.45p.m on November 5.

Springsteen Closes With Fireworks Show and Wedding Bells

Display location:Giants Stadium
City:New York
Date: Oct.9

Details: There were lots of rumors flying around about Friday night's Bruce Springsteen show at Giants Stadium, the final concert at the venue. The previous night, Eric Clapton and Jon Bon Jovi were bandied about as possible guests, and there was talk of an extra hour added to the typically marathon-length set by Springsteen and the E Street Band.

There were no guests, but Springsteen made sure the night was special, particularly for one couple. As he's done for the past year or so of the 'Working On A Dream' tour, Springsteen turned to the crowd for the sign request portion of the night.

After busting out the Rolling Stones' "Last Time," which he "performed for the first time" and said was "perfect for the occasion," Springsteen announced, "We have a proposal," holding up a sign that read, "Susanne, Will you marry me? Rainer."

The crowd got the answer when Springsteen went over to the barrier and sang the appropriate "Waitin' On A Sunny Day" to the happy couple. After she said yes, Springsteen hugged and congratulated both.

The last night at the venue could have been solemn, but Springsteen was clearly having none of that. Opening with the poignant, anthemic "Wrecking Ball," written especially for the occasion, Springsteen immediately called out to the crowd. "Let me hear you, it's the final night," he bellowed.

As in each of the previous shows, the middle portion of the set was dedicated to a full album. 'Born To Run,' marked by epic scope and artistic vision, was Thursday's choice. For the final night, Springsteen chose 'Born In The U.S.A,' a good pick considering the album's seven hit singles, including "Dancing In The Dark" and "Glory Days." Other cuts, including "Working On The Highway" and "Darlington County," kept the celebration going. Live title track "Downbound Train" and the closing "My Hometown" turned into powerful sing-alongs.

Following the traditional lights-up performance of "Born To Run," the encores included "Kitty's Back" and a fireworks show for "American Land" that even had the E Street Band standing at the front of the stage looking up to the sky in awe. The crowd then answered Springsteen's call to let him hear it, refusing to let the stadium go gently into the lit-up night. "Alright, Giants Stadium, you ready for one last dance?" Springsteen asked. "This one's for all the Jersey girls," he added, finishing up with a wistful cover of Tom Waits' "Jersey Girl" that sent Giants Stadium's musical tenure into the history books.

While there are more events to come at the stadium, including Giants games, last night was a fitting going-away party for an old monument.

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Oct 6, 2009

Fireworks Display at "Bienvenido Gustavo"

Display location: Los Angeles
City: Los Angeles

The day finally is here and L.A. is ready for him.

Gustavo Dudamel conducts his first concert today as the new music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. A live audience of 18,000 awaits him for the welcome party -- titled "¡Bienvenido Gustavo!" -- at the Hollywood Bowl. Many more are expected to watch and listen to him online and on the radio.

The nearly five-hour event -- which includes performances by several classical and pop groups -- begins at 4 p.m. and is scheduled end with fireworks around 9 p.m. As the main attraction, Dudamel is scheduled to appear last among the lineup of performers.

Culture Monster will be live blogging from the Bowl all afternoon and evening. We'll plan to get you the inside scoop from musicians, the audience and the technical crew responsible for pulling off this mammoth concert.

So what can you expect from today's festivities? The roster is jam-packed with international and local talent.

First up will be Alfredo Rodriguez, a 23-year-old Cuban jazz pianist, who was discovered by Quincy Jones. He defected in January and now resides in L.A.

He will be followed by Gospel musician Andrae Crouch, a pastor at a San Fernando church, who will lead a choir made up of area singers of all ages.

Flea (of the Red Hot Chili Peppers) will perform with members of the Silverlake Conservatory of Music, a local ensemble he founded to provide affordable private lessons to youth.

Next, famed jazz musician Herbie Hancock will perform with the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts Jazz Band.

David Hidalgo of East L.A.’s Los Lobos, along with bluesman Taj Mahal, will take the stage to perform with Los Cenzontles, a group of young musicians who specialize in a blend of traditional Mexican music and electric bass and drums.

At this point, Dudamel will take the podium to lead the EXPO Center Youth Orchestra in a special arrangement of “Ode to Joy” from Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.

Dudamel will then conduct the entire Ninth Symphony with the L.A. Philharmonic before a fireworks grand finale.

At a rehearsal Friday night at the Bowl, Dudamel walked through Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with the Philharmonic, fine-tuning certain passages and working on phrasing with the string sections.

"Follow each other. I will be here if you need me," he told the orchestra.

The musicians seemed to be as awe-inspired and starstruck as his fans. Bass Matthew Rose -- one of four vocal soloists for the Ninth Symphony -- snapped some of his own photos of the conductor during a short pause in the rehearsal.

"It'll be exciting to experience the energy of the crowd," said David Moore, a musician in the bass section of the Philharmonic.

"Gustavo's been spending a lot of time bringing out more involved textures of the music. He's specific about energy and character. I think it'll be exciting to see how he will start sharing his vision of the orchestra in the months ahead."

Fireworks Display at Friday's Detroit Tigers game

Display location:Comerica Park

Details: DETROIT - As per schedule, the fireworks went off following Friday's Detroit Tigers game at Comerica Park.

The arrival of such explosiveness was long overdue.

There's been little in the way of big blows lately from Tiger bats and if that situation doesn't change this weekend, the Tigers are in danger of blowing up a magical season.

More and more with each passing day it appears the Tigers, who've been on top of the American League Central since May 10, might not be in first place at the end of the most important day of the season.

That would be Sunday, the last day of regular-season play.

While the ever-charging Minnesota Twins were getting it done, outscoring the Kansas City Royals 10-7, the Tigers were getting done in, run 8-0 by the Chicago White Sox before 34,726 who came to celebrate and went home awash with concern.

And then it was one.

Detroit's lead atop the division, that is. One game ahead with two to play.

``We have to find a way to win these next two games,'' Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera said. ``We know we have to win.''

It would help their cause if guys like Cabrera, who get paid millions to produce runs, could actually get the ball out of the infield.

Three times Friday he came to bat with a runner on base. He struck out once and popped out the other two at-bats

``We've got to get some runs,'' Tigers manager Jim Leyland lamented. ``We haven't scored any runs the last two games.''

By the time Friday's drubbing was finalized, Clay Rapada was on the mound for Detroit, Brent Dlugach was at second base, Don Kelly at third base and Alex Avila behind the plate.

A month ago, if someone told you that the Tigers would be fielding second- stringers and September call-ups in the final games of the season, you would have expected a good feeling in the pit of your stomach.

So what's with the acid reflux that's shifting into overdrive?

Maybe it's the reality that the Tigers can't seem to close this deal.

Maybe it's the haunting memories of 2006.

Three years ago, the Tigers moved into first May 16, but their drive to the division title was halted by a season-ending five-game home losing streak, allowing the Twins to slip in and sneak away with the AL Central title.

True, Detroit did settle for the wild card and a wild ride that led to an AL title and a World Series loss to the St. Louis Cardinals, but that was then.

This time around, there will be no lovely parting gift for the Tigers.

It's win or go home empty-handed.

``I told them, `You guys aren't going to get any help,' '' Leyland said of his players. `` `If you want the division, you've got to win two games.' ''

The Twins, who started their final homestand at the Metrodome on Friday, might discover that this weekend won't be farewell to the Hefty bags in the outfield.

At the very least, there could be a one-game playoff there for the AL Central title, which would likely be held Tuesday.

Or, post-season baseball could be destined for Minnesota.

The good news for the Tigers is that 16-8 Zack Greinke, Kansas City's Cy Young Award candidate, takes the hill Saturday against the Twins.

Three years ago, he won one of three season-ending games for the Royals at Comerica Park to cost Detroit its title, so if you believe in karma, perhaps he owes the Tigers one.

The saddest news is that right now Greinke looks like Detroit's best hope.

Well, at least the fireworks lit it up.

A fireworks display finale at the Bowl

Display location:
City:Los Angeles

Details: The fireworks over the Hollywood Bowl spelled "¡Bienvenido Gustavo!" as the new music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic led his orchestra in the evening's third and final rendition of Beethoven's Ode to Joy.

Over and over the crowd stood and applauded Dudamel as he took his bow with the Philharmonic.

The only words the conductor spoke to the capacity crowd this evening were a brief speech after the performance of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony and before the concluding fireworks.

"So, this is a very special moment for my life," he said. "It's great to have all these people here. I cannot see ... "

At this point he looked out to the audience and gestured to it, inspiring a deafening cheer.

Dudamel spoke of the importance of unity in the Western Hemisphere, which he described as "our complete continent together, not north and south."

He continued in a mix of English and Spanish: "I am very proud to be Latino, Venezuelan. I am proud to be South American. But I'm very proud to be American."

He then led the Phil in a performance of the Ode to Joy, accompanied by dazzling fireworks so loud that they caused soloists Michelle DeYoung and Measha Brueggergosman to jump from being startled.

The crowd gave him another standing ovation, with chants of "Gustavo, Gustavo" heard as the conductor waved goodnight.

Head to 169 Bar after the Manhattan Bridge 100th Anniversary fireworks and music show

Display location:over the Manhattan Bridge
City:New York
Date:October 4th

Details: On Sunday, October 4th starting at 7pm we're going to celebrate something most of us take for granted, the Manhattan Bridge. The Bridge is turning 100 years old and we've got to celebrate it in grand NYC fashion.

At East River Park Ampitheatre on Cherry and Jackson streets (which is just south of Grand St and the FDR drive) at Corlears Hook Park. (Which funny enough is close to the Williamsburg Bridge) The Manhattan School Of Music Brass Quintet is going to start off the celebration with a little music; free of course. Then around 8:15 pm the fireworks show will start over the Manhattan Bridge.

It's not everyday even in New York that we get to see large fireworks show. It only gets better when you get to hear some music by the distinguished Manhattan School of Music.

After the fireworks end take some time out and head by a few bars down there in the LES. I highly suggest the 169 Bar (which they could leave out the 1 yea?!) located at 169 E. Broadway (bet. Rutgers & Madison). It'll only be about a 10-15 minute walk away from the park.

It's a great spot for people who enjoy live music and it has a 80 year running tradition. As a matter of fact I would go there before seeing the entertainment and fireworks because they have $3 well cocktails and $2 shots from 4-7:30 pm everyday!!

169 has kick ass music. That real rock, and old classic soulful R&B in between music acts. Its run by a New Orleans musician and is brining some of that New Orleans style and swing with it. The cover for a show will run ya $6 to go for a show but its well worth it.

NYC celebrates Manhattan Bridge's 100th anniversary with fireworks display

Display location:Manhattan Bridge
City:New York
Date:Dec 31

Details: The man who designed her deflection cables also designed the infamous Tacoma Narrows Bridge, which collapsed four months after being built.

And, certainly, she never fostered mystique or intrigue the way her rivermate did.

But though the youngest and far from the most-beautiful of the four bridges that span the East River, the Manhattan Bridge has stood the test of time and this year marks its 100th Anniversary.

Officials begin the centennial celebration Sunday with fireworks and a parade of vintage cars — the first in a series of events as the gray-blue bridge built of nickel steel moves toward its 100th birthday on Dec. 31.

The Brooklyn Bridge, considered one of the most-breathtaking bridges in the world, also is the oldest of the four spans, having opened on May 24, 1883. The Williamsburg Bridge opened Dec. 19, 1903, while the Queensboro Bridge, also known as the 59th Street Bridge, opened on March 30, 1909 — a scant nine months before the Manhattan Bridge.

A suspension bridge, the Manhattan Bridge spans 1,470 feet and connects the Bowery and Canal Street in Chinatown with Flatbush Avenue in the downtown Brooklyn neighborhood now known as DUMBO — or, Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass.

The cables were designed by Leon Moisseiff, who later designed the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. That bridge came to be known as “Galloping Gertie” because it was highly unstable in winds that breezed through the narrows where it connected Tacoma to the Kitsap Peninsula in Washington. It opened in 1940 and collapsed within four months in one of the most-dramatic collapses ever captured on movie film.
The Manhattan Bridge has had its troubles, as well.

In 1978, cracking and corrosion forced the emergency closure of the Manhattan Bridge. It underwent extensive rehabilitation throughout the 1980s.

Though the bridge never captured the imagination of the public the way the Brooklyn Bridge did — how many people have ever tried to sell the Manhattan Bridge? — the bridge is noteworthy for a number of design elements. Most prominent among them is an arch modeled after the Porte St. Denis, a Parisian monument located in the 10th arrondissement, which stands at the Manhattan entrance to the steel bridge.

The Manhattan Bridge has been featured in a number of films, among them: I Am Legend, Independence Day and the 2005 remake of King Kong.

Thousands flock to Monte Foundation fireworks show

Display location:Seacliff State Beach

Details: APTOS -- A two-hour wind advisory pushed performances back nearly an hour for the 15th annual Monte Foundation Musicfest and Fireworks Extravaganza on Saturday, but once Bret Drucks & the A-List hit the stage at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, a sea of people blanketed Seacliff State Beach.

Early in the day, the event went off like any other year, with students from schools throughout the county lined up in booths selling food ranging from cotton candy to barbecue tri-tip sandwiches.

Once the sun began to set, music fans came in droves to the beach. Tents, blankets and towels took over the sand, as people hunkered down in wind gusts that swept across the crowd. In fact, the wind forced stage manager Steve Johnson to cut holes into the sides of the tents around the stage.

But many were happy to see the music and celebrities that appeared before the annual fireworks show that raises hundreds of thousands of dollars for local schools. "Where can you go to a concert for $15?" said Melissa Scott of Aptos. "And you get a fireworks show and you can bring the kids. You can't beat it, it's great."

Marc Monte, founder of the Monte Foundation, said he believed he would draw 30,000 people by the end of the evening.

"We doubled the cost this year for the show. We've added a lot," Monte said. He added that because the cost of the tickets doubled at the gate, it pushed a lot of people to buy tickets before the event. "We're not going to lose money by any means. The regular amount of money that is raised will be going to the schools. We're not sure if we're going to get more money than before but it's a huge possibility."

Monte said working with Griffin Guess, owner of Cartel Records and husband of supermodel Marisa Miller, gave the event the energy it needed.

"We definitely hope to do it again next year," Monte said. "We did run across some hiccups but not in a bad way. Once you see the results on the other side it becomes real clear. It's just about helping out the cause."

Once the wind died down, Bret Drucks & the A-List kicked off the musical performances with special guest Black Nova. The dream-pop band Lost in Los Angeles was introduced by Miller about an hour later.

Actor Matthew McConaughey introduced his J.K. Livin record label artist, reggae singer Mishka, who performed at 8 p.m.

Just in time for the fireworks, Really Doe closed out the musicfest with a high-energy performance with special guest GLC, a Chicago-based rapper signed to Kanye West's G.O.O.D. Music label.

Hasan Foster of Cartel Records said overall the night went very well.

"Cartel is very happy we could make the event. It's been great working with Monte," Foster said. "We look forward to doing it again next year."

Though early in the day there were rumors West would perform, the rap superstar never showed.

Monte, the president of Deluxe Foods, created the Monte Foundation 15 years ago to raise money for area schools. Any school in Santa Cruz County can participate by selling tickets and setting up a food booth at the event. The show generally brings in $200,000-$300,000 for the schools each year, but organizers hoped to raise $500,000-$700,000 this year with the musical lineup.

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Oct 3, 2009

the Annual Rudlolph F. Monte Foundation Fireworks Display Celebration

Display location: Aptos
Date:October 3

Details: APTOS, Calif - The northbound and southbound Highway 1 off-ramps will be closed at State Park Drive between Park Avenue and Rio del Mar on Saturday, October 3 between 4:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. for the Annual Rudlolph F. Monte Foundation Fireworks Celebration.

The closure will be clearly marked to advise motorists. CHP and other law enforcement will be on site to assist with traffic control.

Fireworks Display portrays Qinghai-Tibet Railway, Shenzhou space shuttle

Display location:Tian'anmen Square
Date:Oct. 1

Details: BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- Amid applauses and excited exclamations from the audience, a firework drawing portraying a train running on the Qinghai-Tibet Railway lighted the Tian'anmen Square and dazzled all on the scene.

The firework drawing was displayed on a screen-like installation on the Square. Gunpowder was fixed on thousands of spots on the screen and were lighted in a preset order to "draw" pictures.

The show was part of an evening gala held in the heart of Beijing to celebrate the 60th founding anniversary of the People's Republic of China.

Organizers of the gala also employed fireworks to shape a Shenzhou spacecraft blasting off to the skies of Beijing.

Performers danced across the Tian'anmen Square to songs that won the hearts of billions of Chinese in the past decades, as the gala puts on its third group dancing themed the "brand-new China," and turned the Square into a sea of colors.

China's National Day evening gala begins with spectacular fireworks show

Display location:Tian'anmen Squar

Details: BEIJING, Oct. 1 (Xinhua) -- A grand evening gala to celebrate New China's 60th founding anniversary started Thursday evening at the Tian'anmen Square when 60 birthday-candle-shaped fireworks exploded into the sky and lit up the vast square.

Red, pink, white and orange fireworks shot up into the night sky, lighting up the Tian'anmen Rostrum and 56 giant decorative columns, which were set up on the square to represent China's 56 ethnic groups.

That was the beginning of a 33-minute fireworks feast in the evening. Earlier this month, the Beijing Daily quoted pyrotechnist Ding Zhenkuan as saying that the display would send nearly 42,000 shells into the sky, doubling the number fired at the Beijing Olympics opening ceremony last August.

Following candle-shaped fireworks, a teenage boy, standing at the podium for the flag-raising ceremony, played with a trumpet the melody of the song of "My motherland".

As the boy was playing the trumpet, more than 4,000 performers gathering under the podium began to play the magic effects of more than 4,000 LED-light-equipped trees.

Vice director of the gala, Zhao Dongming, called the performance as "light cube", referring to the well-known Olympic architecture "Water Cube", or the National Aquatics Center. The building, equipped with LED lights, can put on various colors at night.

The performers of the "light cube" displayed a rolling effect of the 60 years from 1949, when the People's Republic of China was founded, to 2009. Fireworks meanwhile again shot up and exploded in the night sky, creating the Arabic numeral of "60," symbolizing New China's 60th birthday.

Seconds later, a fireworks-armed curtain, standing opposite to the Tian'anmen Rostrum, was ignited and began to explode. The exploding fireworks on the curtain -- 90 meters wide and 25 meters high -- created the sun, river, waterfall and mountains, representing the vast land of China.

Fireworks Display at Seacliff State Beach

Display location: Seacliff State Beach
Date:October 3, 9:30 p.m

Details: The Music Fest and Fireworks Extravaganza at Seacliff State Beach, Saturday October 3, 1:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Free parking and free shuttle from Cabrillo College. $15 Pre-sale admission & $30 at the door with children 5 and under Free! Great music and entertainment starts at 1:00 p.m. and Fantastic Fireworks Extravaganza 9:30 p.m.

Please let the Sponsors of the Monte Foundation Music Fest and Fireworks Extravaganza know you appreciate their support of Santa Cruz County Schools and Youth Programs!

The Monte Foundation is a countywide partnership between the community and businesses. Its success depends upon the cooperation between individuals, schools, youth groups and sponsors - a very successful partnership which would fail without the generosity of its partner sponsors. Please patronize the MFMFFE sponsors and let them know you appreciate their support! And do remember to use your Monte Foundation Card at participating sponsors!

Table Sponsors for 2009

Pac Com Management • Arrow Citrus (831) 475-4028 • Testorff Construction • Area Distributing • Couch Distributing • Santa Cruz Commercial • Watsonville Coast Produce • Barry Swenson Builders • Walters & Kondrasheff • Clover Dairy

Annual Sponsors

  • Ocean Honda—“Where good deals happen” Contact Steve John prior to you purchase from Ocean Honda and earn a $100.00 donation to the school of your choice! Call Steve at 464-1500
  • Pacific Wave Surfboards, Skateboards, Gear and Apparel
  • Bailey Properties—“You have a life, We let you live it...........Throughout Santa Cruz County”
  • Granite Construction—One of the largest heavy civil contractors in the US - Headquarters in Watsonville
  • Elyxir Distributing—Providing beverage delivery and services ~ 1-800-743-3894
  • Santa Cruz County Bank—Your LOCAL Community Bank in Santa Cruz County!
  • Music Now Disc Jockeys—One of the most requested professional DJ entertainment services
  • Clover Stornetta Farms—supplying you with the cleanest milk in the United States (Available at Aptos Deluxe)
  • Watsonville Coast Produce— Conventional and Organic Fresh Fruits & Vegetables
  • Zambelli Fireworks—“First Family of Fireworks”
  • Budget Closet—Storage Solutions at reasonable prices! 831-685-2419
  • CreativeGal Web Design—Graphics for Web and Print 831-476-6871
  • The Holcomb Corporation—Developers - Builders - Realtors ~ 831-688-6807
  • Deluxe Foods of Aptos—Your neighborhood grocer with the best service and the finest foods in the county 831-688-7442
  • The Van Zantes Professional Photography—If a picture is worth a thousand words ...

Monte Foundation Card Discounts are available at:

  • Pacific Wave—10% off your purchase of clothing, shoes, sunglasses and watches - no discounts on boards
  • Baskin Robbins—Buy a 2 scoop sundae and receive a 2 scoop sundae free - All Locations.
  • Santa Cruz County Bank—Savings account free of maintenance fees for one year! See Bank for details.
  • Bill’s Wheels—10% off your purchases, Excludes Decks.
Kid A Booths

K-1—Cabrillo Cheer-Laser Tag
K-2—Boy Scout Troop 674-Fat Cats
K-3—Pacific Collegiate-Inflatable Basketball
K-4—Aptos Girls Water Polo-Obstacle Course
K-5—Watsonville Charter-Tsunami Super Slide
K-6—Soquel Foundation-Monkey Bounce

Kid B Booths

K-7—Salesian Sisters- Berry Go Round
K-8—Mar Vista-Large Swing
K-9—Mountain School-Helicopter Ride
K-10–Scotts Valley High-Wild Raft
K-11–Ceiba Prep- Heavy Haulin’ Slide
K-12–Good Shepherd-Fishing for a prize
K-13–St. Francis-Jungle Crawl
K-14–Monte Vista-Fast Pitch Baseball
K-15–Jobs Daughter-Floating Ping Pong
K-16–Aptos Academy-Large and small Strickers
K-17–Duncan Holbert-Carousel Bounce
K-18–Girl Scouts-Long John Silver Game
K-19–Holy Cross- Professional Ring Toss
K-20–Watsonville Boy Volleyball-Carnival Games
K-21–Harbor Football- Game
K-22–Mt. Madonna- Rock Climb

Kid Stage • 3:00 to 8:00

3:30-4:00–Singers Tanee Nusbaum and Guest
4:00-5:00–No Limits Dancers
5:00-5:30–International Academy of Dance
5:30-6:00–Steps Dance Studio
6:00-6:45–Sant5a Cruz Dance Company
6:45-7:00–Madelon Curtis Dancers
7:00-7:30–Alyssa Kayne
7:30-8:00–Total Khaos

Main Stage • 5:00 to 9:30

Snack Booths

S-1—Boy Scouts 523 Kettle Korn & Drinks
S-2—Moreland Notre Dame-Martinelli juices and
Strawberry Shortcake
S-3—Scotts Valley High-Candy & Water
S-4—Pacific Collegiate-Coffee, Brownies, Cakes,
Donuts & Drinks
S-5—Pacific Collegiate-Pop Corn and Soda
S-6—Pacific Collegiate-Hot Cider, Brownies and
Mini Muffins
S-7—Pacific Collegiate-Cookies and Pie
S-8—Monte Vista Cheer-Water and Hot Chocolate
S-9—Pacific Collegiate-Smoothies, Mini Pies and
Cup Cakes
S-10–Santa Cruz Sentinel
S-11–THE BEACH Radio Station 101.7
S-12–KDON Radio Station 102.5

Food Booths

F-1—Aptos High Soccer-Skrit Steak Sandwiches
F-2—Aptos High-Drinks
F-3—Lakeview Middle School-Tacos & Drinks
F-4—Raggamuffin-Brownies, Pop Corn Candy
& Snacks
F-5—Pajaro Valley Children’s Center-Chicken,
Carnitas, Veggie Burritos And Drinks
F-6—Mount Madonna-Samosa, Brownies,
ice/slushees and Drinks
F-7—Girl Scouts-Hot Dogs, Chili Dogs, Chips &
F-8—Mountain School-Clam Chowder and Chili
Bowls & Drinks
F-9—Pajaro Middle School-Super Tostadas
F-10–Pajaro Middle School-Chimichangas and Drinks
F-11–CEIBA College Prep School-Meat Tacos,
Pop Corn, Churros and Lighted Jewelry
F-12–Soquel Sports Foundation-Garlic Fries &
Hot Dogs
F-13–Soquel Sports Foundation-Drinks
F-14–Salesian Sisters-Tri Tip Sandwiches & Portabella
F-15–Salesian Sisters-Drinks
F-16–Watsonville Charter School-Tamales
F-17–Watsonville Charter School-Corn on the Cob
F-18–SLV Gradnite-Nachos
F-19–Pacific Collegiate-Cheese, Pepperoni, Veggie
Pizza & Drinks
F-20–Pacific Collegiate-Hamburger, Chips and Drinks
F-21–Pacific Collegiate-Root Beer Floats
F-22–Harbor High Cheerleaders-Cup cake Walk

Monte Foundation Board
  • Marcus Monte, President, Deluxe Foods of Aptos Corporation President
  • Rudy Monte, CEO, Deluxe Foods of Aptos Corporation Vice President
  • Paul Bailey, Bailey Properties of Santa Cruz Treasurer
  • Board Members: Mark Holcomb, President Holcomb Corporation • Steve John, President, Ocean Honda Chevrolet • Kurt Kniffin, Branch Manager, Granite Construction • Glenn Ely, President of Elyxir Distributing.
Rudolph F. Monte Foundation A non-profit 501(c)3 Organization, 783-39 Rio Del Mar Boulevard, Aptos, CA 95003?Phone (831) 685-3317?FAX (831) 688-1051. Kim Gallick, Executive Director, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Come to the 15th Annual Monte Fireworks Extravaganza at Seacliff State Beach! Saturday, October 3, 2009 from 1 to 10 PM- Rain or Shine!

Firework displays dazzle

Display location:Victoria Harbour

Details: At least 350,000 people lined up on both sides of Victoria Harbour last night to watch a spectacular fireworks display marking the 60th anniversary of the People's Republic of China.

Tens of thousands more watched from vantage points in the Mid-Levels while millions took in the display, organized by the Chinese General Chamber of Commerce, on television.

Meanwhile in Beijing, the sky was ablaze with equally dazzling fireworks.

Designed by Cai Guoqiang, known for his work in the Beijing 2008 Olympics, three giant "fireworks paintings" depicting Chinese landscapes were hung by 250-ton cranes over Tiananmen Square. They created a 90-meter by 25-meter pyrotechnic "curtain" - the largest of its kind in the world.

Sixty "birthday candles" also exploded into the skies to commemorate the years since the founding of the People's Republic. The 33-minute show featured about 42,000 shells and more than 4,000 performers.

In Hong Kong, a total of 32,000 fireworks arranged in nine themes were set off. The climax was an arrangement of four characters spelling out "China 60" - 30 times each on the Hong Kong island and Tsim Sha Tsui sides of the harbor. The 23-minute extravaganza was accompanied by marching band songs, including Yellow River and Pearl of the Orient.

Multicolored lotus flowers, hearts, and smiling faces brightened the night sky in quick succession. A final explosionof lights accompanied by a musical crescendo rounded off the show.

The weather also cooperated, the forecast of scattered showers failing to materialize.

The 60th anniversary celebrations began early in the day with the flag- raising ceremony at Wan Chai's Golden Bauhinia Square.

About one thousand people had gathered at the square before the 8am ceremony at which the National Anthem was played. This was followed by a reception at which Secretary for Justice Wong Yan-lung, as acting chief executive, addressed the hundreds of VIPs and invited guests.

"Hong Kong has had an irreplaceable role to play" in the nation's reform and opening-up process over the last 30 years, Wong said after taking the stage following a cultural performance.

A carnival at Victoria Park featuring magic shows, lantern displays and game booths - jointly hosted by the Home Affairs Department and the Leisure and Cultural Services Department - also drew hundreds in the afternoon.

Fireworks display at National Day evening gala

Display location:Tian'anmen Square

Details: Golden dragons formed by fireworks rose above the Tian'anmen Square about half an hour after the National Day evening gala began Thursday in Beijing.

The vivid fireworks dragons flew over about 60,000 people cheering and dancing on the square.

The crowd burst into an exclamation of surprise and admiration. Many of them were residents from Beijing's districts. They had practiced dancing for about a month.

"We took lessons once or twice every week in the past month. The training was organized by our neighborhood residents' committee," said a lady dressed in a Tibetan traditional female robe in her fifties. Her neighborhood in Haidian district in northwest Beijing offered a performance of Tibetan dance.

On the 2,000-square-meter screen at the southern end of the square, fireworks formed a series of "motion pictures" that desert turns into oasis and spring bubbles in the sunshine.

Soon after the fireworks dragon disappeared in the dark sky, about a dozen cloth "dragons" turned up on the ground, carried by dancers and accompanied by more than 120 "lions". The traditional dragon and lion dance highlighted the theme of this part of the performance, the takeoff of China.

Inside Disneyland’s new Halloween fireworks show

Display location: Disney theme parks
Date: Halloween

Details: Orange and red lights burst, ghostly images waft on Sleeping Beauty Castle and guests join in on a group scream — all for Disneyland’s first Halloween fireworks show.

The display debuted Friday night as Halloween Timebegan at the local Disney theme parks. The 13-minute show, described as “wicked fun,” is based on the Disney villains and their music, said John Addis, senior show director.

Guests started setting up spots to watch the fireworks before 5:30 p.m. — four hours before the show began. Disney had to rope off the circular, plaza area hours before the event. It’s the earliest that Addis said he’s ever seen people arrive for a fireworks show.

The display has unique features, Addis said.

For the first time, a 20-foot orb rises 45 feet in the air on top of the castle, Addis said. On the orb, guests can see various projected images, including that of animated host Jack Skellington from “The Nightmare Before Christmas” movie.

Throughout the show, about six plumes of flames shoot 40 feet into the air along the castle, Addis said. They are so hot that nearby audience members can feel them.

Zero, the ghost dog from “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” flies across, just as Dumbo and Tinkerbell did in previous fireworks shows.

Screaming comets rise 400 feet above the audience, Addis said.

In all, workers fire off 700 shells — about 50 more than the previous fireworks show. All is set to a soundtrack of creepy music, from Cruella De Vil’s theme song to “Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf.”

“I think Halloween is my favorite fireworks show we’ve done to date,” Addis said.

Audience members also said that they were happy with the show.

“It was epic,” said Tomas Estrada, 24, of San Ysidro. “It was a bunch of surprises. They had new fireworks tricks. … It was in your face.”

Sharri Knight, 52, and her daughter, Rebecca, 17, of El Segundo, came at 5:30 p.m. for the show, and especially Zero. They liked how the show combined Disney classics with newer shows.

“It was awesome that they combined all different forms to entertain you,” Rebecca Knight said.

The Halloween fireworks show is part of Disney’s strategy to give guests, especially annual passholders, something new throughout the year.

“We wanted to do something for the seasons. We have guests coming back. We love having a new fireworks show for our guests,” Addis said.

While the theme is spooky, it’s designed to be family-friendly for kids, Addis said. Guests also can see a special projection near the it’s a small world ride, where it is less crowded.

“Halloween Screams - A Villainous Surprise in the Skies” runs nightly through Nov. 1.

China to stage biggest fireworks display

Display location:around Tiananmen Square
Date:Oct. 1

Details: CHINA will stage the world's biggest-ever fireworks display in Beijing this week to mark 60 years of communist rule, state media reported today.

The Asian giant has imposed a huge security clampdown in the capital ahead of October 1 celebrations, which will include a military parade, song and dance performances, and the huge fireworks show around Tiananmen Square.

The National Day fireworks display will include more than 20,000 fireworks shells - double the number used to light up the sky for the Olympic opening ceremony last year, the official Global Times newspaper reported.

Quoting Ding Zhenkuan, director of the fireworks performance, the newspaper said there would be 99 launch bases for the rockets, including Tiananmen Square and Chang'an Avenue - the route for the parade.

Fireworks Display 'paintings' largest in the world

Display location: Tiananmen
Date:Oct. 1

Details: A grand fireworks show will dazzle the night of Oct 1 in Beijing, as part of a gala event celebrating the 60th anniversary of new China.

The show, lasting more than half an hour, will use twice the amount of fireworks used during the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, Beijing Daily reported.

The show's highlights will be three fireworks paintings over Tian'anmen Square for about one minute, said Zhang Heping, deputy commander of the event.

The fireworks paintings, 90 m long by 25 m wide each, are the largest of their kind in the world, he said.

Six cranes, each weighing 250 tons, will be used to ensure these fireworks paintings hang in the air, he said.

He declined to reveal the paintings' themes.

Jia Ding, the gala event's executive director, said that the fireworks paintings will be a big surprise to the audience.

The fireworks display is designed by Cai Guoqiang, who surprised millions of viewers last year with the 29 big footprints walking along the middle axis of Beijing city during the Olympic Games' opening ceremony.

Insiders said the impending National Day fireworks show would excel last year's in scale, art style and technique.

In terms of scale, fireworks will be blasted off from 99 sites in the city's 16 districts and counties this year, instead of 74 sites last year.

The main site is Tian'anmen Square, its neighboring area, and the section of the Chang'an Avenue between Jianguomen and Fuxingmen, Beijing Daily reported.

The fireworks show will use the art form of painting and Chinese calligraphy to surprise viewers.

As for technique, experiments have been carried out in Peking University, to make sure the fireworks paintings, with a total area of more than 2,000 sq m, can resist strong winds.

The operators also must install and adjust the mechanics of the fireworks paintings within five hours, a task that usually requires a week, said Yu Jianping, the gala event's technology director.

Jia Ding, the executive director, said that the fireworks paintings might apply for a Guinness Book of World Records.

Starting yesterday, more than 2,200 lighting facilities and 200 lights at tourist sites have been switched on from 5:30 pm to 11 pm.

Lighting decorations will light up the capital city at night for 11 straight days from last Sunday to Oct 7. During the past National Day holidays, however, the lightings were usually switched on for five days.

During the 11 days, the lighting decorations will last the longest on Oct 1, from 5:30 pm to 2 am next day, the municipal government said.

Also on Sunday, a new painting of Chairman Mao Zedong was hung on the Tian'anmen rostrum to replace the year-old one.

It is a routine that the painting of Chairman Mao will be replaced by a new one ahead of each National Day, Beijing Youth Daily reported.

The new painting is 6 m long by 4.6 m wide. It weighs 1.5 tons including the frame.

Fireworks display illuminate a Branson entertainment truth

Display location:Branson Table Rock Lake
Date: September 25 and 26
Show contact:

Details: On September 25 and 26 there were two different, unique and spectacular fireworks displays in Branson the likes of which are unlikely to be seen in Branson ever again. The fireworks displays were in connection with the annual meeting and convention of the American Pyrotechnics Association (APA) held in Branson that week.

In talking about the APA grand finale fireworks display to be shot over Table Rock Lake on the evening of September 26, Paul Miller, General Manager of Branson Tourism Center, and a 12 year veteran of the Branson travel services industry, said he believed it would be one of those displays that “We only get to see, in person, at major events like the Olympics.”
Camren Qualls, who saw the display as it was fired, said, “It was amazing and was definitely the best fireworks display I have ever seen.” This author would add that he too saw it and was simply blown away by this unique awesome display.
The question a potential visitor to Branson might ask is, “What is the relevancy of the APA fireworks displays to me if they were unique special events that I will not be able to see while I am in Branson?” The simple answer is they illustrate a wonderful Branson entertainment truth, “There is almost always something unique, special and interesting going on in Branson.”

Oh sure there are the shows, attractions, museums, lakes, beautiful scenery, restaurants and shopping of every type from unique specialty shops to discount malls and Branson Landing that make Branson the exciting destination it is. One of the neat things about Branson however, is that there is always something new and exciting going on.

In addition to Branson’s already great show schedule of live shows, nationally recognized stars and shows are constantly being added for special engagements. Whether it is a limited engagement by a Broadway show like “Peter Pan,” or by an entertainment legend like Neal McCoy, Johnny Mathis, Daniel O’Donnell, the Righteous Brother Bill Medley and Paul Revere and the Raiders, Andy Williams, or any of a myriad of other stars Branson’s entertainment scene is constantly featuring something new.

Branson’s biggest paid attraction is the 1880’s themed park, Silver Dollar City, with all the amenities, action, food and excitement one would expect from an award winning theme park. Yet, in addition, it has a number of different festivals every year and might very well, if the number and quality of the festivals is taken into consideration, be the festival capital of the nation. It is currently celebrating its National Harvest Festival with hundreds of craftsmen and performers from all over the nation.

Branson is the home of the “Titanic, World’s Largest Museum Attraction,” which is a special adventure in itself. Yet, in addition, from Ice Carving competitions to Masquerade Dinner parties, it seems that there is always some additional value added excitement taking place on or around the Titanic like a three day wood carving competition featuring some of the best wood carvers in the country October 9 through 11.

Branson Tourism Center’s Miller says out that events like the APA fireworks displays, car shows, festivals, and a variety of new and unique events are a wonderful part of the Branson entertainment scene. He points out that a lot of the web sites such as www.Branson.Com, , www.BransonTourismCenter as well as Branson’s largest on line forum provide information on Branson special events. Miller said the information is also available by phone through the Branson Tourism Center at 1-800-785-1550.

Halloween night fireworks display

Display location:North River
Date: around 10:45 p.m

Details: SALEM — A Dave Matthews cover band will headline a new grand-finale concert on Washington Street during this year's Halloween night festivities.

Halloween falls on a Saturday this year for the first time since 1998, and city officials expect to see some of the largest crowds in years.

"It depends on the weather, but if it's a nice weekend, we could see 100,000 people on Halloween," said Kate Fox, executive director of Destination Salem, the city's tourism department.

Unlike previous years, large-scale Halloween celebrations are likely to stretch two nights this year. Many costume balls are scheduled for Friday night, and Halloween revelers are expected to start arriving earlier than usual on Saturday.

"It won't be a 24-hour time span," Mayor Kim Driscoll said. "It'll be a 48-hour time span."

As a result, the city has announced new details on its plans to control and disperse the massive crowds on Halloween night.

Destination Salem inked a deal with Boston radio station 92.9 to produce a Halloween night grand-finale concert on a main stage at the head of Washington Street, not far from the MBTA commuter rail station.

Dancing Nancy, a Dave Matthews cover band that also plays other popular covers from the '80s and '90s, will perform at night and lead into a fireworks display that will be shot over the North River around 10:45 p.m.

Beforehand, an opening act will also take the stage, determined by the results of a talent competition the radio station will host in October.

The station will bring in a portable stage, and the concert will be produced by the same organizer that runs EarthFest, a free concert the station hosts at the Esplanade in Boston.

City officials are hoping the concert will create an orderly exit at 11 p.m. when police expect to clear the streets. That's because the stage will provide what last year's light show at the same spot did not — a public address system where announcements about public safety and last trains can be passed on to the crowds.

"We really want to entertain people and clearly let people know they should come in early, enjoy Halloween and head out at 11," Fox said.

The radio station will also run a series of public service announcements on the air throughout October, reminding revelers about "the dos and don'ts of Halloween," Driscoll said.

"The trick that we're trying to work on is to have a concert for the people where it captivates their attention, but not so big that it'll attract more people to come here," Driscoll said.

Destination Salem will pay the station to produce the concert, using money generated from the Derby Street carnival.

Recently, Driscoll held a preliminary meeting with MBTA officials to coordinate Halloween night commuter-rail service and explore the possibility of adding extra train cars.

Roads may also close earlier than usual on Saturday, Driscoll said.

Police will again implement a zero-tolerance policy on alcohol and issue citations with tripled fines — a technique first used last year that proved to be effective, Driscoll said.

"Whether you love or hate Halloween, there will be people here," the mayor said. "We want to make sure they're planning for a safe and secure stay while they're here."

Radio 92.9 will start promoting the opening-act competition on Oct. 1. When the station conducted a similar talent search for EarthFest, it drew about 350 submissions from local bands.

Starting in mid-October, the station will start promoting the Halloween night concert on the air.

Dancing Nancy, which is a nod to the Dave Matthews Band song "Dancing Nancies," is a "mostly Dave Matthews tribute band," according to its Web site. But it also plays covers of Pearl Jam, Coldplay, U2, John Mayer and Toad the Wet Sprocket.

"We want people to have fun," Fox said.

December fireworks display at Asheville

Display location:Public Works Building parking lot
Date:Dec. 5, 12, and 19
Show contact:259-5800

Details: ASHEVILLE — Visitors to downtown can enjoy three consecutive Saturdays of fireworks in December celebrating Asheville's second annual Seasonal Sizzle at Seven.

The Grove Park Inn Resort and Spa donated $40,000 to cover the costs of the fireworks in a bid to bring more holiday business to downtown and to the nearby hotel.

Fireworks will go off at 7 p.m. Dec. 5, 12, and 19, whether it's raining or clear, said Diane Ruggiero, city superintendent of cultural arts. “We like our fireworks in Asheville. The three shows aren't the same. They will grow in size over the three weekends,” she said.

The fireworks will be shot off from the city's Public Works Building parking lot for about 20 minutes each of the three evenings.

South Charlotte Street will be closed for safety reasons during the fireworks, and traffic will be rerouted along Martin Luther King Boulevard.

The Grove Park will be working with the Asheville Downtown Merchants Association and the Asheville Independent Restaurants group to promote the fireworks.

“It's an effort to bring more people downtown and get them to stay downtown. We did it last year, and we heard from a lot of the merchants that it was very successful,” said Deborah Potter, a Grove Park Inn spokeswoman. “It will be great for our guests since they can see the fireworks from the Sunset Terrace.”

For more information, call the city's Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts Department at 259-5800.