The Top 5 Craziest Fireworks Ever Created

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When it comes to fireworks, bigger is always better. Sure, sparklers might be fine for the kids, but a handheld magnesium incendiary device burning as hot as 2000 degrees Fahrenheit is mere child’s play when it comes to the heavyweights of the firework world. For the real pyrotechnic enthusiast, you need a device that flies hundreds of feet in the air, emits blindingly brilliant showers of multicolored sparks and/or explodes with enough force to shatter nearby windows. Preferably, your fireworks will do all three at once! If the goal was to create a firework that edged across the border of Crazy Town, then these five entries succeeded with flying, exploding, glittering colors.

5 The World’s Largest Bottle Rocket

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Leave it to the Portuguese, apparently, to go and create a Guinness-certified world-record sized bottle rocket, because that’s what they did in late 2010. The bottle rocket in question would require a pretty big bottle as a launching vehicle, as it weighed in around 30 pounds. The rocket is reported to have soared some 325 feet in the air before exploding with enough force to make your 4th of July celebration look downright unpatriotic.

4 The World’s Longest String of Firecrackers

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When you get bored watching a continual string of firecrackers explode, you know that is one hell of a lot of firecrackers! The current world record for the longest continuously exploding strand of firecrackers was set at a 2006 Fireworks Convention held in Appleton, Wisconsin. The participants claim to have set off nearly ten million, five hundred thousand firecrackers in this record-setting and mildly pointless display.

3 The Saturn Rocket

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If you have never run for your life under a barrage from malfunctioning Saturn Rocket firework, then you are missing out on a small piece of the American Experience. Saturn Rockets, AKA Saturn Missiles, are essentially just boxes filled with rows of upward facing plastic tubes, each of which has a conical nose and is packed with a simple, explosive propellant. The key design element of this firework is the total lack of aerodynamics inherent in each individual missile. As often as they launch skyward, a Saturn Rocket will skim low across the ground or go spiraling off in random directions with an almost preternatural ability to hit the member of the assemblage least predisposed to enjoy pyrotechnics in the first place.

2 The G Man Mobster Killer

Image Credit: Sheltonfireworks.com

No, that’s not the name of some terrible rapper from the mid-1990s—it’s the name of a Roman Candle from Shelton Fireworks. But this is no typical Roman Candle, mind you: the G Man Mobster Killer packs no fewer than one hundred and forty individual shots in its hefty tube! That’s so much high flying, flaming action that you’ll be redecorating the house for Halloween before the last smoldering orb has fizzled out.

1 The Largest Single Firework on Earth

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This single shell, the Yonshakudama, emits more power than all the ordnance of many fireworks displays put together. It is just under 50 inches across, and when launched reaches an altitude of almost 2,500 feet! On September 9th and 10th of every year, the Japanese town of Katakai is treated to an earth-rattling explosion from one of two types of Yonshakudama shell: one is a “Brocade crown over small flowers,” while the other shell gives off a “Floral shell with shells twice blooming.”

Steven John is a published novelist and competitive pole vault champion. (The latter is not true.) His writing runs the gamut from speculative fiction to essays fueled by a mix of mirth and derision. He has never been to Lisbon but, statistically speaking, is probably taller than you.

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