toronto fireworks

Unexpected fireworks freak out Toronto's west end

A calm, quiet evening in Toronto gave birth to an anxious late night mob when, seemingly out of nowhere, fireworks started going off along the waterfront.

Really loud ones. Lots of them. For about 10 minutes straight.

Bright, choreographed bursts of light exploded across the sky near Ontario Place shortly after 10 p.m. on Tuesday.

Twitter, in turn, exploded with worried and ticked off comments.

While set off in the city's west end, the fireworks could be seen from east of the Don Valley.

The sound travelled an even greater distance. People on Twitter reported hearing booms from as far away as Jane and DundasOld Mill and Bloor, and even Yonge and Eglinton.

The noise was so intense in nearby residential neighbourhoods like Parkdale and Liberty Village that car alarms were set off all over the place. This proved incredibly annoying for those with early mornings on Wednesday.

The display was beautiful, sure...

But the sounds were disconcerting — especially for those who couldn't see the actual fireworks.

Gun violence is top of mind right now in many communities as shootings spike across the city. Four people were killed by guns last weekend alone in Toronto.

There's also the fact that fireworks sound a lot like cannons.

Loud, unexplained bangs are justifiably scary in a climate such as this.

Making matters worse was that nobody, not even the police, had been properly warned about the fireworks show ahead of time.

"Sound of gunshots: Close Ave/ King St.. several shots reported," reported Toronto Police Operations on Twitter around 10:20 p.m. "Unconfirmed. Unit in the area advises it's possibly fireworks. They are checking the area."

As it turns out, the display was put on by the organizers of ROTARYFEST at the Canadian National Exhibition Centre.

"Ah ha. Rotarians," commented Shawn Micallef. "How will the Shriners top this?!"

How, indeed?

Lead photo by

fleg_bleebl


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