Balloon Fiesta 2017 in Albuquerque New Mexico. What a wonderful experience!
The Balloon Fiesta was an event we have been wanting to attend since 2013 and we finally got to go this year. What a wonderful experience!!! For nine days in October, the New Mexico skies are painted as hundreds of balloons lift off from Albuquerque’s Balloon Fiesta Park. Nothing rivals the power of Mass Ascension on crisp early mornings as these colorful graceful giants leave the ground to take their place in the desert sky. For ballooning fans worldwide, the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is a pilgrimage. There’s something for everyone to enjoy . . . whimsical special shapes filled with equal parts of hot air that create a magical night landscape for spectators to wander. This event is the Twilight Glow. No matter who you are, the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta will leave you awestruck and want more. Yes, I just left a month ago and I want to do it AGAIN!
What is the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta?
The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is a world-renowned attraction and destination for kids of all ages. It is a fair, with all the great fair food. For more than three decades, the first week in October brings the smell of roasting chiles and the beautiful, magical moving picture show of hot air balloons sailing silently through the crisp fall air.
Guests from all over the world come to Albuquerque to celebrate ballooning. Literally, hundreds of balloons will be taking flight from the Balloon Fiesta Park this year.
From its modest beginnings in 1972 with 13 balloons launching from a shopping mall parking lot, the Balloon Fiesta has grown to multiple events launching year-round at the custom-designed, 365-acre Balloon Fiesta Park. Our signature event remains Balloon Fiesta—which, with 700 balloons, is the largest ballooning event on earth, the most photographed event on earth, and the largest annual international event held in the United States.
Imagine 54 football fields, all put together. That’s the size of Balloon Fiesta Park’s 78-acre launch field! And at this Park’s “playing field,” there are no losing teams and no viewing stands. Guests walk the field and are part of the action.
We reserved our tickets with Rainbow Ryders and our pilot was Dean Donley. What a great team! Everyone at Rainbow Ryders was very nice and accommodating. We were a little nervous about the whole trip, just letting the wind take us, but after Dean explained how the flight was going to be, what we could expect, and what to see and expect, we felt better.
After our trip, we were greeted with mimosa and muffins. Of course, we were handed our Flight Certificate. Yeap, we did it. We flew on a balloon!!! Check off the bucket list.
I leave you with this Irish Balloonist Prayer, which is on our certificate:
The winds have welcomed you with softness.
The sun has blessed you with its warm hands.
You have flown so high and so well, that God has joined you in laughter and
may set you gently back again into the loving arms of Mother Earth.
We hope you decide to attend the festival next year or whenever possible. But, definitely, don’t miss it, even if you don’t want to fly.