Rouketopolemos (Greek Рουκετοπόλεμος, literally “rocket war”) is the name of a local traditional event held annually at Easter in the town of Vrontados (Βροντάδος) on the Greek island of Chios. As a variation of the Greek habit of throwing fireworks during the celebration of the service at midnight before Easter Sunday, two rival church congregations in the town perform a “rocket war” by firing tens of thousands of home-made rockets across town, with the objective of hitting the bell tower of the church of the other side. The rockets are wooden sticks loaded with an explosive mixture containing gunpowder and launched from grooved platforms.
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