The birth of the Fireworks Competition and its development
In 1970, in the midst of the tourist boom on the Costa Brava, Blanes City Council, wishing to take advantage of the socioeconomic situation, was keen to raise the profile of Blanes in the tourist sector by promoting an activity for which the town might become famous. It was decided to take advantage of the town’s festa major, held at the end of July, in order to promote an event that was strikingly unusual at the time, namely a fireworks display. That same year, a pilot test was carried out. The Brunchú fireworks company was commissioned to produce a much more spectacular fireworks display than was usual. Given its great success in terms of the large number of visitors it attracted and the positive reaction of local residents, Blanes Town Council —presided over by the mayor, Domingo Valls i Coll, and with the collaboration of local councillor Lluís Tremoleda, in charge of organizational matters— decided to organize the Costa Brava International Fireworks Competition, which welcomed both national and foreign fireworks companies. Over the course of its first 24 years of life, the competition was modified in various ways, always maintaining a high standard of quality.
The launch site has always been Sa Palomera Rock, an incomparable setting jutting out to sea right in the middle of Blanes Bay. Between 1983 and 1987, the competition underwent a major change, expanding from three days of fireworks to four. It later reverted to the three-day format, but with a much bigger daily budget. Meanwhile, In 1985, the town mayor, Maria Dolors Oms i Bassols, presented the inaugural Town of Blanes Trophy. The aim of this initiative was to promote the name of Blanes alongside that of the Costa Brava. The trophy, designed by a local jewellery store, Capdevila Joieria, is made out of silver and semiprecious stones that represent exploding fireworks.
From 1996 that, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the competition, the number of participating fireworks companies was increased and the competition was extended to five days, on the initiative of the town’s mayor, Fèlix Bota i Gibert, and with the collaboration of the local councillor for Fairs and Festivals, Francesc Xavier Ruscalleda i Busquets. In 1998, the Technical Committee proposed extending the competition to six days, and the following year it was extended to seven days.
The Fireworks Competition in Blanes, famous throughout Spain, enjoys great prestige among fireworks companies from all over the world. The competitive spirit and determination of the participating companies to win the Town of Blanes Trophy has made the competition a truly great fireworks event that is often featured on Spanish and Catalan TV networks, and in all the local, provincial and national media outlets.