Posts tagged with "fireworks"

Rita Azar illustration for 360 MAGAZINE travel stories

Free Ways to Have Fun in Montreal This Summer

You don’t have to break the bank to have an amazing time in Montreal. The city is filled to the brim with stunning museums, gorgeous nature parks, and frequent cultural festivals. The best part? Most of the best things to see in Montreal are actually completely free.

Travelling on a budget may be tricky but in a city like Montreal, it’s easy to have an unforgettable trip without spending a fortune. 

#1. Explore the natural beauty of Mount Royal Park

The namesake of Montreal is also one of its main attractions, the beautiful Mount Royal. This peaked hill stands tall in the centre of the city, surrounded by a nature park designed by Frederick Law Olmstead, the renowned architect who made New York’s Central Park a reality.

Mount Royal Park is especially beautiful in the summer for picnics, relaxing by Beaver Lake, or hiking to the top for some spectacular views. You can spend a whole day here and all without spending a bit.

#2. Create your own bike tour of the city and surrounds

A great way to spend a day without breaking the bank is by seeing the city on a bicycle. Montreal is crisscrossed with bike paths that total a length of over 500km and all are open to the public for free.

Cycle along the Lachine Canal into Old Montreal, pass the Olympic Village, and enjoy the sights of Parc La Fontaine along the way. If you’re feeling especially adventurous, you can even make your way off of the island to explore the north and south shores.

#3. Get your culture fix at one of the city’s amazing museums

The Musee des Beaux Arts

For lovers of art and photography, there is no better way to spend an afternoon for free than at The Musee des Beaux-Arts. Along with a permanent exhibition, the museum features artwork from Canadian and European artists like drawings, engravings, silverware, and works of art from ancient Asia, Egypt, Greece, and South America. 

Modern art aficionados can also see Andy Warhol’s advertising on display too! Museum admission is free for all on the first Sunday of the month and every day for those 20 and under while seniors (65+) are admitted free on Thursdays.

The Redpath Museum

The Redpath Museum is named after a 19th-century sugar baron who financially supported the museum on the campus of McGill University. 

History and science geeks will get a kick out of the wide range of fossils (including dinosaurs), skeletons of rare and extinct animals, rocks and minerals, and a fine collection of Egyptian antiquities that the Redpath has to offer. And best of all, admission is free.

#4. Partake in the summer festivals

Montreal is known as a festival town and it’s no wonder with locals that love to eat, drink, and celebrate life every day of the year. 

The city is abuzz with music festivals throughout the year like the International Jazz Festival, Les Francofolies, Les Nuits D’Afrique, and the indie music festival Pop Montreal. Music lovers, rejoice! From shows and live entertainment, the summer is ablaze with music — and all of it is completely free.

#5. Enjoy the spectacle of the International Fireworks Competition

Summer visitors to Montreal will likely be familiar with the International Fireworks Competition there that takes place twice a week throughout June and July. This epic (and free) attraction draws locals and tourists alike to the waterfront of the Old Port, the Jacques Cartier Bridge, or the amusement park, La Ronde, for the best views.

#6. Stay in and relax

Whether you’re a Montreal local or on a summer holiday, some days you may just feel like staying in and snuggling up with a glass of wine and a good movie. 

For a fun and free good time, put on your comfiest outfit and try your luck at one of Canada’s great online casinos with free spins that require no obligation and are easy to activate. Who knows? Your free spins might end up paying off!

MONTREALIVE

The vibrance of the city is undeniable, as is the accessibility for all types of travellers on any budget. There are delicious cheap food choices, it’s easy to walk or cycle around, and there are plentiful free activities to do and things to see – especially in the summer when nearly every week hosts some kind of festival, street fair, parade, or cultural show.

Montreal has been called many things throughout the years. From “The City of Steeples” to “Festival City”, “The City of Saints”, nothing captures the essence of the city as well as its most recent nickname: “Montrealive”.

Guillen illustration

The Murder of Fort Hood Soldier, Vanessa Guillen

By Emmet McGeown


“How can this happen on a military base? How can this happen while she was on duty? How can this just happen and then let it go under the rug like it was nothing?” These were the words of Mayra Guillen, sister of Pfc. Vanessa Guillen, who has been missing for months and is now confirmed dead.  

On April 22nd, Pfc. Vanessa Guillen, a 20-year-old Hispanic Small Arms and Artillery Repairer, went missing. She was last seen alive at a parking lot at squadron headquarters in Fort Worth, Texas. For months, Pfc. Guillen’s family held out hope that their beloved was still alive, yet the discovery of remains near the Leon River, north of Austin, has vanquished that hope. While the FBI is still awaiting a positive DNA analysis, the family believes that the remains belong to Vanessa.  

Yet, this story does not begin with her disappearance nor does it end with her death. Prior to her vanishing, Pfc. Guillen, according to her sisters, was having difficulties with sexual harassment while stationed at Fort Hood, outside Killeen, Texas. The attorney representing the family in the case revealed that Guillen had confided to her sisters and several other soldiers that a superior had walked in on her while taking a shower and that he proceeded to sit down and watch her. Other relatives and Pfc. Guillen’s boyfriend have noted on social media that something is “not right” and that Vanessa felt unsafe at the military base.  

However, during a press conference on Thursday, July 2nd, senior special agent for the Fort Hood Army Criminal Investigation Command (CID), Damon Phelps, reported that there was no evidence backing the claim that she had been sexually harassed. He affirmed that “there has been no information — and we have interviewed hundreds of people… There is no credible information about that.” Despite this rebut by CID, family attorney, Natalie Khawam said, in an interview with PEOPLE, that she believes Pfc. Guillens was sexually harassed by Spc. Aaron David Robinson.

Spc. Robinson was the leading suspect in Vanessa Guillen’s disappearance, and as authorities caught up with him on Tuesday evening, he shot himself. It has since been revealed that Robinson was, in fact, responsible for the murder of Pfc. Guillen’s. Guillen’s was bludgeoned to death with a hammer in the armory where she worked, according to the family’s attorney. They made this discovery through an extensive investigation, in which witnesses divulged that they saw Robinson transporting a large box labelled “very heavy in weight.”

Then, after consenting to an examination of his cellphone records, court documents reveal, it was discovered that Robinson made several phone-calls to his girlfriend Cecily Aguilar on the night of Apri 22nd and into the early hours of the April 23rd. After being interviewed multiple times, Aguilar finally told investigators that her boyfriend had murdered Guillen. She also revealed how she and her boyfriend had met up and dismembered Guillen’s body together with a “hatchet or machete type knife” and, after attempting to set her corpse on fire, buried Guillen’s body parts in three different holes. Texas Rangers have since arrested Aguilar and she now faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.  

The issue of sexual harassment within the Army remains a problem in this case, given that Guillen’s family, according to their attorney, claimed that Vanessa was planning on reporting Robinson the day after she was murdered, and had delayed over fear of reprisal and inaction. Yet the Army says there exists no credible evidence that she was sexually harassed before her disappearance, and in a statement from the Fort Hood Press Center, officials said that the criminal investigation “has not found any connection between sexual harassment and Vanessa’s disappearance.” They plan to continue their investigation in light of new revelations. 

Lupe Guillen, another sister of Vanessa’s, told NPR that her sister wanted to be in the military since she was a little girl, “she wanted to be a fighter. She wanted to be a hero. She wanted to be someone in life. … The military failed her.

The family is now pushing for legislation to create an independent agency for soldiers who are victims of sexual harassment and assault. 

Mina Tocalini, 360 Magazine, Fireworks

DON’T PLAY W/ FIRE

By Gabriella Scerbo

Fireworks: Usually an item associated with July 4th or any sort of celebration. Every year around the major cities hundreds of people gather to watch fireworks, and are in awe of their multicolors, and unique pulsating sounds. Another thing that many love about fireworks, is the excuse to sip a cold beer (maybe a little too much) but overall spend quality time with family. This time of celebration and positive correlation seems to be out the window when discussing fireworks in the political climate of 2020.

Fireworks are illegal in many states without a permit, and police departments across the country are cracking down on the abundant use. Law enforcement is once again restating the ordinances regarding these fireworks. In Illinois, the Police Department posted a Facebook update, once again reminding residents of the policy. In June, New York City firework complaints have more than tripled within the past year. This influx in fireworks is due to the fact that large gatherings are cancelled, such as concerts, sporting events and many other celebrations due to the spread of COVID-19.

Another theory regarding the influx of fireworks, are the protests following the death of George Floyd. In New York City and major cities around the country, thousands protest police brutality and years of systemic racism, and racial injustice faced by the Black Community. The Black Lives Matter movement have also been involved in directly using fireworks in addition to peaceful protests, and a larger national conversation about the system injustices.

Pasadena, California has seen a 400% increase of fireworks related complaints. Around 40% (2 in 5) of Americans plan on buying their own fireworks this year, due to the cancellations of many celebrations due to COVID-19. In the Big Apple, Firework complaints have rose to 13,109 compared to just 32 last year.

Not only are these fireworks having a large affect on humans, they also affect everyone’s favorite member of their families: pets.

Although the fireworks seem to glisten in the sky, used for either boredom or to reiterate an important movement, they can also cause serious physical injuries. These effects include loss of fingers, hands, and even tissue damage on the face. Fireworks should be left to people that know how to properly use them.

Not only are the fireworks causing physical injuries to many, they are also causing light pollution and air pollution, which has a direct negative effect on the environment. These fireworks put harmful chemicals and smoke in the air, these chemicals have negative implications such as coughing, shortness of breath, and even heart attacks.

The loud noises are causing concern to frontline workers during the pandemic, looking to get a good night’s rest from another stressful day in the hospital. As well as officer workers, eager to get back to some sense of normalcy during Phase 2 of reopening following COVID-19.

Not only are these fireworks having a large negative on humans, they also affect everyone’s favorite member of their families: pets. Similar to humans, the loud noise is not the most pleasing one, and can cause mental problems. Dogs specifically, when hearing these noises tend to self mutilate, due to anxiety.  Smaller dogs, such as border collies, Australian Shepherds and chihuahua’s can be especially sensitive.

Unfortunately, the amount of pets that are entered in the shelters post July 4th are around 80% higher  than normal. Imagine the potential increase in  shelters with the fireworks in 2020.

These astronomical numbers will be steadily increasing if this firework predicament is not properly taken care of. Many amazing pets lives will be destroyed, as well as there loving families.

 In the grand schemes of things, fireworks are a very small issue in the sea of large issues. However, right now they have been brought into the spotlight as yet another concern for the safety of major cities around the country.

Spark Joy with these 4th of July Cocktails

The most-anticipated summer weekend is just around the corner! Level up and make your Independence Day celebration sparkle with these simple yet elevated cocktails, each profiling a different flavor and sure to suit everyone’s preferences. After a heavy afternoon of  burgers and hot dogs, wash it all down with refreshing and low-sugar cocktails while jiving to your favorite tunes.

From a delicious Watermelon Firecracker Margarita to a Berry United Lemonade and elevated G&T, sip back and enjoy the summer weather.

The Independent G&T

    • 4 ounces Fever-Tree tonic water
    • 2-3 frozen cranberries (garnish)
    • 1 popsicle (garnish)
  • Ice

Pour Jaisalmer Gin and tonic water over ice in a tall glass. Stir and garnish with a popsicle and cranberries.


Berry United Lemonade

    • 3 cups lemonade
    • 1 cup cold water
    • 4-6 dashes Angostura bitters
    • Lemons (garnish)
    • Blueberries (garnish)
  • Ice

In a pitcher, pour Diplomatico Rum, lemonade and water. Add in lemon and bitters. Garnish with lemon slices and blueberries. Serve chilled.


Firecracker Margarita

    • Kosher salt
    • 1 lime wheel
    • 3 ounces fresh watermelon juice
    • ¾ ounces fresh lime juice
  • Watermelon (garnish)

Place some salt on a small plate. Rub rim of an old-fashioned or rocks glass with lime wheel (reserve for serving); dip in salt.

Combine watermelon juice, Partida Tequila, and lime juice in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously. Strain cocktail into prepared glass and garnish with watermelon lime wheel.


FIVESTAR NYE 2018

FIVESTAR NEW YEAR’S EVE MAKES A HUGE SPLASH ON NEW YEAR’S EVE ON WATSON ISLAND

Dazzling Fireworks, A Sleek 110-Foot Yacht and Spinning DJs Set the Stage for the Fête’s Most Memorable Edition

FiveStar New Year’s Eve, the luxury-driven New Year’s Eve fête produced by Concept ID, celebrated its exclusive party on the intimate Watson Island as well as key on-brand nightlife activations throughout the week of at Rockwell, Delano South Beach and ORA.

Dazzling fireworks, a sleek and newly unveiled 110-foot yacht by Astondoa for invited guests, influencers and VIPS to enjoy a dinner by TATEL, festive tunes and tropical weather it all set the stage for the event’s most memorable edition yet with 1,300 guests attending.

Upon entering, visitors were greeted by a branded step-and-repeat to take photos as well as the Saint Tropez-esque beach club concept that offered the ideal beachside venue with its plush VIP and Golden Lounges. Precisely at midnight, guests were treated to a dazzling display of fireworks over the Downtown Miami skyline all the while enjoying drinks from the two premium open-bars that lined the space. Additionally, three Miami-based DJs, (Patrick Pizzorni, NAZA and Giovannetti) spinned tunes throughout the night into the early hours.

For more information on FiveStar New Year’s Eve, please follow the official website here:

http://www.fivestarnye.com

Follow FiveStar New Year’s Eve on Facebook: www.facebook.com/fivestarnye and Instagram:

www.instagram.com/fivestarnye

ABOUT CONCEPT ID

Concept ID is a marketing and communications agency with clients such as Itau bank, Must University, Fusion Energy Drink, Absurda sunglasses, Ginetta race car and experience in events like Kevin Hart’s Heartbeat Weekend, Oculto, Sunset Funeral Miami and FiveStar New Year’s Eve. Their unique solutions in the Miami/US market have made them successful in their creation, production and project management of accounts in entertainment and sports. For more information on Concept ID, please visit www.conceptid.us or call 786.768.2447.