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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Bonfire Night

For MT
In Britain, schoolchildren are brushing up on the story of a 17th-

century plot to kill King James I. TV ads lecture about firework safety at events commemorating it. Stores are brimming with crackers and rockets.

But in Moscow, the Nov. 5 anniversary of the would-be regicide by a group of Catholics in 1605 will mostly pass unnoticed. Organizers of the Rosinka residential complex's traditional Guy Fawkes Night party -- when an effigy of Fawkes, one of the plotters, is burned on a bonfire -- say theirs will be the only one. And even that has attracted controversy.

"A Russian once said to me: 'This is an outrage. You British think you're all so civilized, with your cucumber sandwiches and so on, and here you are burning a man for his religious beliefs,'" said Shona McGrahan of Action for Russia's Children, the charity organizing the Nov. 4 event. "In fact, he wasn't burned, was he? He was hung, drawn and quartered," she added.

ARC is spending hundreds of dollars on fireworks to launch over the complex's lake, and preparing an effigy made of straw and old clothes, she said. And, perhaps, guests will take a minute while nibbling homemade gingerbread men or sipping mulled wine to reflect on the contemporary relevance of Fawkes' story.

"He was a terrorist, really," McGrahan said. "I suppose it's especially relevant with events in the Middle East, and it especially resonates when you hear terms like religion, fanaticism, about people willing to die for their religious beliefs."

She said ARC would donate the proceeds to the charities it supports, including a center for deaf students.

Saturday, 5 p.m.-7:30 p.m. at Rosinka, Angelovo, Krasnogorsk district, 730-3200. For tickets (500 rubles), contact Shona McGrahan, 795-4091. www.actionarc.com, www.rosinka.ru.