January 14, 2008 16:09 ET

Canada Post: Fireworks Light Up Canada Post's Celebration Stamp

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Jan. 14, 2008) - On January 15, Canada Post will issue a third Celebration stamp, this one featuring fireworks. The domestic rate stamp is also a Permanent™ stamp, meaning it will always be worth the going rate.

This Celebration stamp follows the 2006 festive balloons and the 2007 stamp featuring confetti and ribbons.

The Celebration stamps evoke feelings of excitement and happiness. As popular legend has it, a Chinese cook came across the recipe for fireworks quite by accident while mixing charcoal, sulfur and potassium nitrate, all common kitchen ingredients of the day. The mixture burned and, when compressed in a bamboo tube and ignited, emitted a piercing blast ideal for fending off evil spirits and ghosts. These loud explosions were then used in battle during the 13th century. The craft's popularity then "exploded" throughout Europe, and fireworks were commonly used by royalty to mark such occasions as weddings, festivals and coronations.

Since their development as an art form, fireworks have continued to increase in sophistication. Music was integrated into 18th century fireworks displays and during the 1830's, pyrotechnics discovered that different colours could be created by adding metal salts to the mixture. Since 1985, Montreal has been home to the world's premier international fireworks competition, The Fireworks Festival - L'International des Feux Loto-Quebec.

Collectors will be pleased with the fine design details of the stamps. Each of the coloured fireworks explosions has been finished with two hits of varnish to emulate a flash of light. The die cut at the top and bottom edges is an exact replication of a 13-pin perforation.

Designed by illustrator and designer Michael Zavacky of Ottawa's McMillan Digital Art, the theme allowed for greater avenues of creativity. "I was able to weave a whole rainbow of colours into the design, and also include a mix of intricate patterns and decorative elements to capture the sky full of fireworks," said Zavacky of his very first stamp design. To tie into the concept of celebration, Zavacky added an exclamation mark to the word, "Canada" - a first for Canada Post. "It really adds to the whole excitement of the stamp" Zavacky said.

The domestic rate stamps, which measure 36 mm x 28 mm (horizontal) will be available in a booklet of six stamps. The continuous print run by Lowe-Martin will bear pressure sensitive stamps on Tullis Russell paper. They are general tagged on all sides with simulated perforations. The Official First Day Cover will read ZEBALLOS BC.

More information on this commemorative stamp is available in the Newsroom section of the Canada Post Web site; and a photo of the stamp is available in the Photo Centre of the Newsroom. The stamp and Official First Day Cover will be available at participating post offices, online through the links on the Canada Post Web site ( or by mail from the National Philatelic Centre. From Canada or the United States, call toll-free 1 800 565-4362; from other countries call 902-863-6550.

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