Looking back on the history of Rhythm and Booms - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Looking back on the history of Rhythm and Booms


MADISON (WKOW)-- Every year at Rhythm and Booms, thousands of families gaze up into the sky and come together as a community. Looking back on the 21-years of Rhythm and Booms it's easy to see the impact it has had on thousands in the Madison area.

"It's a reminder about what life is supposed to be about and our support of each other and our support of this community," Rhythm and Booms creator Terry Kelly says.

After starting the event back in 1993, Kellyy and hundreds of volunteers have seen Rhythm and Booms take on a life of it's own. The first year was almost rained out, but in the hours leading up to the fireworks the clouds parted and the event carried on. Organizers knew they had something special when nearly 150,000 people showed up for the inaugural event.

Over the next few years Rhythm and Booms great to include military salutes, carnivals and musically synched fireworks. The military even joined in with fighter jets that would fly by in formation before the fireworks. The event reached its height in 2002, as more than 300,000 people showed up the year after the 911 attacks.

"We were honoring the emergency responders and all the others that died in the 911 attacks," Kelly says. "That was by far the most emotional Rhythm and Booms."

After all this history many residents are sad to see the event coming to an end. After 21-years many are hoping the event will live on in one form or another.

"They shouldn't cancel the event. It's a good event," spectator Gary Maynard says

While the fireworks may soon come to an end, fans say the memories of this time honored event will shine on forever.

"It's a great testament of what a terrific community we live in," Kelly says.

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