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Summer Celebration fireworks: Prepare to be oohed and awed

Laser Light Show

MUSKEGON — Expect the unexpected with this year’s Summer Celebration Fourth of July fireworks.

A new company, American Fireworks of Ohio, is doing them and the company has its own term for what will be lighting up the sky (and Muskegon Lake) — a pyro-musical.

“It’s something that will be really amazing,” said Brian Teeling, lead pyro-technician for Muskegon’s show. “People will go away with their jaws dropping. They’ll go away saying they can’t wait to see it again next year.”

The fireworks will begin after the final of tonight’s three musical acts, which typically is about 10:20 p.m. The concerts begin at 6 p.m. with Jimmy Buffett tribute band Live Bait and will be followed by Kalamazoo’s Matt Giraud of “American Idol” jazz fame. Tribute band Echoes of Pink Floyd takes the stage at 9 p.m. for a concert and laser-light show.

Concert-goers will get to see all the concerts and the fireworks for $20 from the Heritage Landing venue. However, those wanting to view the fireworks only from inside the concert grounds also must pay the $20.

Roberto Sorgi, owner of American Fireworks, said the 28-minute show will be choreographed to 30 songs, including tunes from Beyonce, Jimmy Buffett, Kiss and ZZ Top.

The fireworks will be launched from a barge in Muskegon Lake.

“It will feature products never seen before in Muskegon, such as 3-D effects, which will be neat,” Sorgi said. “We will always have something going on, from water to sky.”

This includes a shell that explodes in the water. “There’s a product that shoots into the water and burns on the water,” Teeling said.

That might sound dangerous, but Teeling said it isn’t.

“A computer fires the entire show,” he said. “Nobody is near the product the entire show. … This is as state-of-the-art as you can possibly get with fireworks.”

There’s also a safety perimeter of about 800 feet around the barge where no boats are permitted.

In addition, it’s not something you throw together in a couple of days.

“We’ve spent over a week on the Muskegon show — a week for 28 minutes,” Sorgi said.

The company has about 100 displays of various sizes going on over the Fourth of July weekend. Joe Austin, Summer Celebration’s executive director, said that budget-wise, Muskegon is in the top 15 shows the company’s putting on.

While Austin didn’t reveal how much the display costs, it is believed to be in the $40,000-$50,000 range.

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Mike Gould sheds light on his passion for Illuminatus 2.1, a laser light show

Editor’s note: University of Michigan junior Ellora Gupta is writing a regular summer series called “Passionate People.” Her goal is to inspire others and her column will cover uplifting stories about Ann Arbor locals who are striving to achieve their goals and passions.

Laser Light Show

Mike Gould has a very unique passion: playing with lasers. As a member of Illuminatus 2.1, he puts together laser shows.

“Illuminatus 2.1, a laser light show, is the driving creative force for my life,” Gould said.

The history of Illuminatus stretches back to 1972 when Gould began constructing laser devices as a hobby with partner Wayne Gillis. Gould calls this period of time “Illuminatus 1.0,” during which they performed very basic light shows using one laser.

“We did light shows up through the 70s,” he said. “It kind of petered out because, really, the only place you could do light shows was in discos, and we were not into disco.”

During the 80s and 90s, however, Gould found it difficult to popularize the lasers.

It was not until 2009 that Gould resumed his activity with the laser light shows. He was asked to perform at Penguicon, an open source software convention. This was the beginning of Illuminatus 2.0, during which he built the first generation of laser lunchboxes: laser devices that had been embedded into metal lunchboxes and could be projected out from within.

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Lasik surgery

If your vision’s blurring and you hate the idea of using glasses or contact lenses, you should consider Lasik surgery as an option. Short for Laser Assisted In Situ Keratomileusis, this walk-away procedure is used to treat near sightedness (myopia), far sightedness (hyperopia) and cylindrical (astigmatism) refractive errors.

Lasik is a walk-away surgery where the patient does not need to be hospitalised. Using a microkeratome, a cutting tool with a metal blade, a hinged flap in the cornea is cut. The flap is folded back and an excimer laser is used to reshape the cornea from the newly exposed surface. Then the flap is put back in place, resulting in a reshaped cornea that produces better vision.

To be suitable for traditional lasik surgery, a person should be 18 years old to ensures that the eye has matured and developed properly, must have a stable vision, should not have any concurrent eye infection, cataract or eye injury, should not have a thin cornea, and suffer from an autoimmune disorder.

The entire procedure takes 15 minutes and is almost painless. The cost of a lasik procedure ranges between Rs 30,000 and 45,000 for both eyes.

Blade-free lasik uses two lasers instead of one, with the first laser replacing microkeratome blade used in conventional surgery. Then second excimer laser is used to reshape the cornea. The blade-free technique makes surgical vision correction possible for people who have steep, flat or thin corneas and not suited for traditional lasik surgery.

NASA has recommended the blade-free procedure for its astronauts as it can withstand the toughest physical conditions, including high G-forces. The cost of a blade-free lasik is between Rs 90,000 -Rs 1 lakh for both eyes.

Avoid splashing water or rubbing the eyes for a few weeks after surgery. You also need to wear sunglasses when you step outdoors. Other than that, you can follow your normal routine from the very next day, with restrictions on TV-viewing or computer use.

Source : hindustantimes

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