The Pyrotechnics Guild International plans to hold its annual convention in the northern Iowa community in August. Lindsey James, executive director of Visit Mason City, says this will be the fourth time they’ve hosted the convention at the North Iowa Events Center.
“We’re really conveniently located for their membership being right here in the heart of the Midwest, we’re easy to get to,” James says. “It’s one of their best attended conventions when they host it here in Mason City, so they are excited to be back and we’re excited to have them.” James says most of the convention, called “Thunder and Fire,” is closed to the public with members attending several different types of seminars and classes.
“They’ll be learning about pyrotechnics and safety when handling fireworks,” she says. “They’ll also be building their shells and different things that will be used on show nights as well as on their competition night.” James says the public is invited to attend fireworks displays on three different nights during the convention. The first two will be Sunday, August 5th, and Tuesday, August 7th.
“Those shows are general admission seating,” James says. “Friday night is the big show, on August 10th. That’s the night that people can reserve their seats and get their favorite spot.” The convention is expected to bring more than 3,000 PGI members with an economic impact of nearly $2 millions.
Mason City has also hosted the convention in 2005, 2009 and 2014. It’s scheduled for this August 4th through the 10th.
(By Bob Fisher, KRIB, Mason City)