Skip to comments.Hot-air balloon fest in Albuquerque - 35th Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
Posted on 10/05/2006 9:12:21 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - For the next 10 days, the skies above Albuquerque will be filled with floating color as hundreds of balloons are launched as part of the city's annual International Balloon Fiesta.
This year's events at the park will feature balloon glows, flying competitions, live music, a wine festival, wood carving competitions and a breakfast burrito eating contest complete with the state's infamous green chili.
But the main draw still remains the mass ascensions the liftoffs of hundreds of balloons each morning from the park.
Thousands of fiesta visitors can interact with balloon pilots and crews on the field as they inflate and fly their balloons in the ascension, said fiesta spokeswoman Kathy Leyendecker.
"There's just this wonderful feeling out there. Even with hundreds of thousands of people on the field, you still feel comfortable," said Leyendecker, noting that last year's fiesta attracted nearly 800,000 visitors.
In addition to the abundant hot-air balloons, 13 teams of gas balloon pilots from the United States, United Kingdom and Germany will launch their balloons on Day 2 of the fiesta to compete in the 11th annual America's Challenge Gas Balloon Race. Winning teams move on to compete in the prestigious Gordon Bennett Race, held in Belgium this year.
Albuquerque's fiesta began in 1972 with a gathering of 13 balloons in the parking lot of a local mall. It grew to become the largest international event held in the U.S. annually and now is held on the 365-acre Balloon Fiesta Park in northern Albuquerque.
I wish I could go to that some day. I've seen pictures and it always looked to pretty.
Yup, quite the sight indeed from what I see and hear..
Now I dread it: all the drivers on I-25 are looking at balloons instead of the road when I commute in the morning....
My ol' man usta say:
"What's the fun? Hanging around under a cloth envelope in a wicker basket with pressurized propane saying: 'Hope I don't die'... 'Hope I don't die'..."
It looks like it's gonna be rained out this year anyhow.
Yes, yes I am a killjoy.
Yep, for the next 10 days it is going to take me an extra 30 minutes to get to and from work. I dont mind though. It is a fun event for the community and all who come to see or participate in it.
"Henry Gale" ping...
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Hmmm... Coincidence? I think not. Gotta go, Art Bell is on...
Got to go back and see the Show again...it is one of the most photographed events .....
Don't you have to be Catholic to go to the Mass Ascension?
OK, I'm going to show my ignorance here - how do all those balloons aloft at the same time keep from bumping into one other?
Its going to make my commute a nightmare. I dread this time of year.