Watch large drone shows over Prague and Brno on the November 17 holiday

In recent years, drone shows becoming a safer and more environmentally alternative in the firework-loving Czech Republic.

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 12.11.2021 16:00 (updated on 12.11.2021) Reading time: 2 minutes

A drone show will take place in Prague over the Vltava river near the National Theatre on Nov. 17 at 6:30 pm, and it will be streamed over social media. A similar show is planned for Brno at Mendlovo náměstí at 7 pm.

Unlike most other public events to celebrate the 32nd anniversary of the Velvet Revolution – officially known as the Struggle for Freedom and Democracy Day – this one is sponsored by a private company, the bank Česká spořitelna.

“On Nov.17, we will celebrate the holiday of freedom. That is why we will bring light over Prague with a great drone show. Take your keys and come at 6:30 pm to the Legion Bridge at the National Theatre or to the embankment at the Jirásek Bridge in Prague to experience what people who rang their keys for freedom 32 years ago felt,” Česká spořitelna said on Facebook.

For those who don’t want to attend the show in person due to the rising number of Covid cases in recent weeks, the entire drone show will be live streamed via Facebook.

Keys are one of the symbols of the Velvet Revolution. Large crowds in Wenceslas Square in November 1989 jingled their keys, showing that they held the keys to their own freedom, and also as a broad hint that it was time for the communists to “go home.”

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Fireworks shows face strict regulations in Prague, with many banned for most of the year. Officials say the noise disturbs wildlife and pets who have sensitive hearing, and the explosions also create pollution. There is also a risk of fires and injuries when fireworks are mishandled.

Drone shows and videomappings are seen as a safer alternative. Prague has had several large videomappings in the past, but large drone shows are relatively new to the city.

A show took place over the Vltava in April 2021, also presented by Česká spořitelna. The company said it was intended to offer encouragement during the harshest days of the pandemic. The show was not publicized in advance as large gatherings were not allowed at that time, but the video was released on YouTube and has over 200,000 views.

A number of public events will mark the Nov. 17 holiday, many of them spread out across Prague in an effort to reduce crowds and allow for social distancing. At the same time as the drone show, a concert at Wenceslas Square featuring headliner Glen Hansard and various events along the length of Národní třída.

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