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Big Böögg bang after only 7 minutes and 23 seconds

In the culmination of the Sechseläuten festivities, the head of the big Böögg snowman figure exploded after only 7 minutes and 23 seconds this year, auguring a good summer for 2014.
By tradition, the longer it takes the head to explode, the worse the summer weather will be. As there was a plethora of small explosions as the fireworks in the head set off this year, the precise time had to be established by a camera in slow motion. This forecast was all the more encouraging on a day when rain dominated the scene on the new Sechseläutenplatz, with the grey of the new slabs from Graubünden matching the grey skies above.
Not that the weather prediction associated with the Böögg is entirely predictable, after all, as revealed in an article from the Tages-Anzeiger newspaper, last year it took 35 minutes and 11 seconds before the head exploded, yet the summer was sunny and warm. What is more, the Böögg's head exploded after 12 minutes and 7 seconds in 2012, leading one to expect a good summer, but it turned out to be wet and rainy. An exception was in 2003 when it exploded after only 5 minutes and 42 seconds and the summer that followed that year was indeed the summer of the century. Way back in 1923, it was so wet on the occasion that the Böögg refused to burn at all.
Among those present on the occasion, in addition to the many representatives of the guilds of the city of Zurich, were a number of honorary guests, including Federal Councillor Johannes Schneider Amman, who heads the Federal Department of Economic Affairs Education and Research, Hannes Germann, the president of the Council of States in Bern, Christian Meyer, the abbot of Engelberg Monastery, Thomas Jordan, the president of the Swiss National Bank, Lino Gurzella, the director of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and Andreas Homoki, the director of the Zurich Opera House. Among the sporting personalities present were Olympic snowboard champion Iouri Podlatchikov (second photograph) and Swiss wrestling champion Matthias Sempach.

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