Vancouver will ring in 2016 with a bang — actually a long series of them — thanks to pyrotechnician Brian Oberquell.
Oberquell and his a six-person crew are charged with lighting the fuse on the New Year's Eve Vancouver fireworks spectacular set to explode over the skies above Canada Place and Burrard Inlet at the stroke of midnight.
"It feels real good," said Oberquell from the barge which will serve as the launching point for the the high-aerial 11-minute music and fireworks extravaganza.
"We love showing people what we do and it's nice to have Vancouver back doing things like this."
Oberquell is referring to a decade-long absence of a public New Year's Eve celebration in Vancouver, something critics have said has contributed to the city's "no fun" reputation.
The midnight fireworks will be the crowning event on a New Year's Eve of live music, performances and food slated for the waterfront on Canada Place Way between Howe and Burrard streets.
A shorter, family-friendly fireworks show is set for 9 p.m. PT to accommodate younger revellers who can't quite make it to midnight.
Organizer Charles Gautier is hopeful the debut NYE Vancouver will prove to be the start of a new tradition.
"We're very optimistic that this is a great foundation for future years," he said. "We were impressed with the level of support from sponsors who agree with our vision to have an outdoor event to ring in new year."