Michigan Pyrotechnic Arts Guild

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MPAG Club President Welcome

MPAG was incorporated in January, 1999, with the express purpose of providing the Michigan fireworks enthusiast an opportunity to share their love of energetic artistry with others of like mind.  MPAG members share a common passion for the art, craft and science of fireworks.  Our members come from all walks of life, and their specific pyrotechnic interests are as diverse as the members themselves.  MPAG members include shell builders, professional shooters, package art collectors, pyro-choreographers, and people who just plain like to watch fireworks.  With the vast array of members you are sure to find a match to your interest.  MPAG also (typically!) publishes a newsletter quarterly and hosts this website for member interaction and shoot information.

We meet approximately 6 times a year at locations throughout the state.  We have been North to Clare, East to Sandusky, South to Mendon and West to Muskegon.   MPAG has a large group of builders that give their best to make things fly, and like most things in the pyro world, when they fly they are spectacular, and they can be pretty cool even when they don’t!  If that’s not your thing, we have a growing contingent of consumer fireworks aficionado's.  They can tell you what year an Excalibur shell was made just by the sound of its lift.  What their product lacks in size, they make up for in sheer volume.
 
For our typical shoots, most of the board of directors arrive at the site around noon time.  Site layout is determined at that time, and the setting of the lines ('b' for display products and 'c' for consumer products) follows.  The 'b' line (1.3g commercial and club made products) firing line has all of its mortars buried.  This gives us a little extra protection is case an item doesn’t go as planned.  The rocket folks have their own barricade, and work with the shell group to coordinate the loading and firing of their items.  NOTE:  Safety is number one and we have never had an injury that needed more than a Band-aid and kiss from mom.  We require hard hats, safety glasses and hearing protection when dealing with the big guns (the 'b' line).

Our 1.4g ('c' line, consumer products) is a bit more relaxed.  While still requiring safety glasses, we only recommend  a hard hat, as a clay plug to the head can hurt.  The C guys can make you think you are inside the display in New York harbor!  They bring it all:  whistling bungholes, spleen splitters, whisker biscuits, honkey lighters, hüsker düs, hüsker don'ts, cherry bombs, nipsy daisers, with or without the scooter stick, and bunches of whistling kitty chasers.  Joe Dirt would be proud!

After the lines are set we hold a quick club meeting to discuss all that affects our group.  After my quick speech, it’s on to the auction.  Club members bring all kinds of stuff out of the barn to sell for the benefit of the club.  After our wallets are empty, it’s on to fill our stomachs.  We generally have a pot luck dinner with some of the best food you can find.  We even have roasted a few pigs and top it off with homemade ice cream and pie.  By the time we chat for a few minutes to let the food hit bottom, you will see some of the hardcore guys start to twitch and pace a bit.  They wait until the permit opens and then its open season on the sky.  We try to keep a good pace but this is no carpet bombing, each person can take the time their item needs and we even manage to fit in some actual choreographed shows from time to time.  On more than a few occasions we run right up to our permit close time with some of the best consumer and professional fireworks you will ever see.

So if you are into the art of light and sound we are the group for you.  We have youngsters lighting fountains and snakes, all the way up to 16 and 24” shells for national competition...and everything in between.  Feel free to contact any of the board members and attend a shoot in your area.

Enjoy our website and please, be careful with your passion.
 
Robert Kesling
MPAG President