Prague drone show to shine a light towards sustainable celebrations

A drone show promoting a new Czech film will take place above Prague on Tuesday, and could replace the city's annual New Year's Day fireworks. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 24.03.2024 16:13:00 (updated on 24.03.2024) Reading time: 2 minutes

Prague had been known for its grand New Year's Day fireworks shows in past years, but the last of those took place in 2019 as the city has cancelled subsequent events due to environmental concerns including the effects on local wildlife. But a new sustainable alternative will debut this week as a drone show is set to light up the city's night skyline.

Scheduled for Tuesday, March 26, from 7:00 p.m., this free event promises to dazzle spectators with a modern twist on traditional celebrations. The drone show has been organized by distributors of the upcoming Czech family film Gump - jsme dvojka (Gump: We're Two) in collaboration with Prague City Hall as officials aim to usher in a new era of eco-conscious festivities.

Prague has taken strides toward animal welfare by banning pyrotechnics in the city center, parks, and areas near hospitals since 2020. Adam Zábranský, Prague Councilor for Property, Transparency, and Legislation, sees the drone show as a humane alternative to fireworks, sparing animals and vulnerable individuals from distress.

"I believe that a drone show could be a way to replace fireworks without causing unnecessary suffering to animals and stress to seniors or children," Zábranský notes through a press release.

Deputy Mayor Jiří Pospíšil echoes the sentiment, highlighting the detrimental effects of fireworks on wildlife and domestic pets.

“I am a big opponent of fireworks and pyrotechnics, which have been proven to cause enormous stress not only to dogs, but also harm to many wildlife species. Every year, they end up in our Prague rescue station, where the workers there treat them and fight for their lives. Not to mention the dozens of dogs that are startled by pyrotechnics and lost to their owners," adds Pospíšil.

"Personally, I would therefore like to see a complete ban on over-the-counter fireworks. Various experiences show that professional drone shows are a way that brings people an attractive spectacle in the sky and at the same time does not harm animals."

On March 26, spectators in central Prague will be able see a 50-meter-wide choreographed drone show featuring images of animals and symbols hovering 70 meters above the Vltava River. The roughly 20-minute show will also be accompanied by music.

Best viewed from the Rašínovo nábřeží embankment or the Smíchovská náplavka embankment across the Vltava, the event will take place without traffic disruptions, ensuring a seamless experience for attendees. The drone show will be free to watch for anyone in the area, but may be postponed in case of inclement weather.

Prague's collaboration with the event organizers not only promotes sustainability but also fosters valuable insights into orchestrating similar initiatives. By embracing modern alternatives to traditional fireworks, the city aims to create memorable experiences while minimizing environmental impact.

Drone shows offer numerous advantages over conventional pyrotechnics, including reduced noise, smoke-free displays, and enhanced safety measures. With its commitment to eco-friendly events, the city paves the way for a brighter, greener future of festivities that could become a new New Year's tradition.

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