Dakota Datebook

Grand Master of Fireworks

Sunday, July 4, 2004

The Rosten Thunder and Lightning Show in Tioga tonight had its origins in 1989 on Bruce Rosten’s farm outside of Wildrose. Rosten is a self-taught fireworks maker who has earned the title of Grand Master, the highest level a shell builder can attain within the International Pyrotechnics Guild.

Rosten and his friends read up on explosives and started building their own fireworks as children. His parents were rightfully worried about his safety – Rosten’s missing finger tip serves as an example of what can go wrong within this field.

Rosten specializes in canister-style Italian shells and says that making them requires exacting mathematic and scientific calculations, technical experience, and artistic expression. He is excited about his new computerized firing system, which will allow shells to launch faster than ever before.

Dakota Datebook written by Merry Helm

This text and audio may not be copied without securing prior permission from Prairie Public.

Dakota Datebook is a project of Prairie Public, in partnership with the State Historical Society of North Dakota, with funding from the North Dakota Humanities Council.

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