For the third year in a row, I represented the Western Pyrotechnic Association (WPA) at Makerfaire to discuss fireworks. Our booth was titled, “WPA – Learn to Hack Fireworks”.
The Western Pyrotechnic Association is a non-profit club which is open to hobbyists and professional pyrotechnicians alike. It exists to promote the fine art of fireworks in an engaging atmosphere to promote safe practices for building and manufacturing fireworks. WPA members are mostly living in the Western United States, although it has members from across North America.
At the WPA, people regularly build shells up to 16″ in size, which is unheard of in the typical fireworks displays. The WPA has been known to assemble up to 24″ shells which is one of the few places in the world you can see shells that large. The WPA has nightly public displays to showcase member shells and we have professional displays to delight our audiences. The WPA holds events in Lake Havasu City, Arizona and Hawthorne, Nevada.
Maker Faire is the largest DIY showcase in the US. Maker Faire is the Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth—a family-friendly festival of invention, creativity and resourcefulness, and a celebration of the Maker movement.
Our booth at Maker Faire is always packed with people who want to know more about making fireworks. We are happy to explain how shells are made, how to fire a show and we have examples of inert shells, diagrams of rockets, cakes, mortars to better explain how fireworks work.
MakerFaire 2015 was a fantastic experience to get the name WPA into people’s mindset in a positive way who might never have run across the organization. It’s hard to put a value on that type of exposure, but I was happy to volunteer my time to facilitate that.
For more information about the WPA, visit: https://westernpyro.org
For more information about Maker Faire, visit: http://makerfaire.com/makerfairehistory/
Special thank you to Davex, Marty Walker, Mike Garrett, Dave Best, Steve Wilson, Pete Hand, Allen Lillie, Colleen Lillie, Dan Ramsauer and Pyro Spectaculars for helping make the participation of the Western Pyrotechnic Association at Maker Faire 2015 such a huge success.