Explosions of multi-colored flowery light, took over the night sky over Kounosu City, Japan's Saitama Prefecture, for the 13th annual Kounosu Hanabi Taikai festival. The crowd of 600,000 people were treated to a show of 15,000 fireworks, capped off by a record-breaking 460kg rocket which burst into a fiery ball of 800m in diameter.
Japan has a long history of celebrating fireworks festivals all throughout the summer months that can be traced back to the Edo Period in 1732.
According to the Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO), night time fireworks were a way to enjoy the cool outdoor evenings. By 1810, the traditions became stiff competition between pyrotechnic houses, with each celebration trying to out-do the other.
Other origins of the firework festivals are also to "appease the souls of those who had died of starvation or of plague and to drive away pestilence during the reign of Tokugawa Yoshimune, the eighth Tokugawa Shogun (1684-1751)," says JNTO's official website.
The Kounosu Hanabi Taikai festival took place on the wide Arakawa Riverbed in the prefecture Northwest of Tokyo, about a 30-minute walk from Kounosu Station on Oct. 11.
Admission to watch the fireworks display was free, however to obtain reserved seating, guests were charged ¥3,500 - ¥15,000 (roughly $30-130).
An official from the Guinness World Records was in attendance at the festival to certify that the 120cm diameter explosive, nicknamed "Four Feet Ball" in Japanese, was indeed the heaviest firework ever to be set off.
Other notable firework-related records include Dubai's 2013 record for the largest fireworks display on Dec. 31 of that year, with the government of Dubai launching 479,651 fireworks from Palm Jumeirah Island and The World Islands.
The crowd ooh-ed and ahh-ed during the pyrotechnic display on Saturday which lasted about four minutes. Although it is one of the newer fireworks festivals (other annual displays have been going on for 100 years), the record-breaking finale of the 13th Kounosu Hanabi Taikai is sure to put the Arakawa Riverbed on the list of must-see fireworks displays for years to come.