SASKATOON — Thousands of residents enjoyed the dazzling display of lights and music in the two-day 2021 Nutrien Fireworks Festival during the Labour Day Weekend at the River Landing Ampitheater.
Organizers closed both the Traffic and Broadway bridges with the latter being the place where the fireworks were discharged. Local food trucks, offering various meals and treats, were lined up at Traffic Bridge.
Traffic Bridge, River Landing and Rotary Park across the South Saskatchewan River were busy with foot traffic as residents enjoyed the various activities that were lined up before the fireworks show that started at 9:30 p.m. on both days.
There was storytelling in the Igloo by master storyteller, actor, and musician Joseph Naytowhow at the Rotary Park while various members of the local community performed various cultural dances.
Nrityati Performing Arts, ZoomBounz, Saskatoon Chinese Dance Club, Saskatoon Highland Dance Association, River City School of Irish Dance, Ignite Danceworks, Kumintang Dance Folk Ensemble, Durga Dance, Joseph Ashong and Friends, Mudra School of Performing Arts, Métis Music, Chinese Dance School of Saskatchewan, Oriental Dance Arts and the Buffalo Boys Dance Group performed on both days.
The Fireworks Festival dedicated Friday’s show to all frontline workers, the display showing appreciation to all workers that helped the community during the pandemic while Day 2 will honour Indigenous and Métis heritage, a gesture towards understanding and reconciliation.
Saskatoon Fireworks Festival President Shad Ali told SASKTODAY the main theme of the event was Strengthening Community Connections. “We have an amazingly strong and resilient community, and this was an opportunity to bring people together, which they were definitely seeking, and allow some positivity.”
“Friday’s show was dedicated to all of our frontline workers as a gesture of thanks and to let them know we got their backs. Saturday was dedicated to our Indigenous Peoples in the spirit of reconciliation and forging forward together. Recent events have given us time to face some uncomfortable truths about our nation and our history. With patience, understanding, acknowledgement and courage to back our commitment through individual and collective action we will surmount this challenge.”
He added that despite the concern of the rising cases of COVID’s Delta variant, there were measures and some restrictions that were put in place.
“We did strongly encourage attendees to wear masks, stay in family and close networks, and use frequent hand sanitization. This even though we were outdoors and with plenty of open space.”