There is a fireworks battle known as ‘the rocket war’ which takes place on the Greek island of Chios annually.
This yearly fireworks battle dates back to the 19th century when the island was occupied by the Ottoman Empire.
This tradition’s origins are unclear, and there are reports the island’s inhabitants used real cannons, instead of fireworks, in the earliest known celebrations. Ottoman authorities banned this practice in 1889.
The overall objective is for one of the two opposing villages to strike the other’s church bell. And all this goes on during the observation of mass inside the churches.
With images of Fourth of July fireworks shows fresh in our minds, it’s quite interesting to see how those in other countries might celebrate with homemade rockets.
It’s reported that nearly 80,000 rockets can be fired during one of these events, and local residents now basically endure the dangerous festival to appease tourists and the industry in general; something Greeks rely on heavily these days.
It is also reported that there is never an official winner declared, as rival villages never agree on who scored the most direct hits with fireworks on the other’s bell. They simply agree to disagree and settle the matter the following year.