Balloon Festival Weekend
Balloon Festival 2014
* See pictures on the Chamber's Facebook page
An annual rite of summer in Dutchess County!
Hot air balloonists from all over the country take off from sites around the area.
Event sponsored by:
Hotline sponsored by:
Is there a cost to attend the Balloon Festival?
No. All launches are complimentary to attend and open to the public.
Can I ride in a balloon?
Yes. A limited number of balloon rides are available for a fee. To take a ride in a hot air balloon during the Balloon Festival, call Balloonmeister Bill Hughes of Blue Sky Balloons at 888-999-2461. Rides last about an hour, cost $225 and are extremely limited. In the past, balloon rides have been used for engagements, weddings, client rewards, birthday/graduation gifts and a whole lot more. Don't miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime experience!
Will there be parking available at all launch sites?
Yes. Free parking is available at all locations on a first-come, first-served basis. At some sites, parking is limited and it is therefore recommended you arrive early. Please follow posted signs and/or volunteer instructions at each site in order to find parking.
What time do the balloons launch?
All evening launches are scheduled for 6 p.m. The first takeoff during the morning mass launches is slated for 6 a.m. Any Moon Glow launch will begin after dark. ALL BALLOONS TAKE OFF AT THE SOLE DISCRETION OF THE PILOT. Sometimes, due to impending weather or other conditions, balloons will launch early/late or will tether to the ground. Please plan to arrive roughly 20 minutes prior to the scheduled launch time at all sites to ensure you see the balloon inflate and rise. Up-to-the-minute information about launch times, including delays, will be available via the Chamber's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/DutchessChamber throughout the Festival.
In case of inclement weather, how will I know if balloons are launching?
As soon as any decision is made on the cancellation of balloon launches, information will be immediately posted to the Balloon Festival website at www.dcrcoc.org/balloonfestival as well as the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/DutchessChamber. ALL DECISIONS TO CANCEL OR PROCEED WITH BALLOON LAUNCHES ARE SOLELY THOSE OF THE PILOTS. Remember, numerous factors contribute to unsafe conditions for ballooning including rain, wind, lightning, etc.
What's the best way to see the most balloons?
The only place to see all the balloons in the area launch at the same time and place is to attend the morning mass launch at 6 a.m. on Saturday, July 5 and Sunday, July 6. Balloons will take off from the docks of the Hudson River Rowing Association boathouse and float over the Hudson River. The Walkway Over the Hudson will be open early to accommodate Festival attendees. The vast majority of evening launch sites have just one balloon, however any sites launching multiple balloons are noted on the schedule pages.
Will the Walkway Over the Hudson be open during the morning mass launches?
YES! The Walkway Over the Hudson will open early on Saturday, July 5 and Sunday, July 6 to provide an amazing viewing vantage point for the morning mass launches over the Hudson River.
I got a great photo of the balloons, do you want to see it?
You bet we do! Please post it to our Facebook page. The best ones might even win a prize!
I have a specific question, who should I contact?
For any and all questions, call the Central Hudson Gas & Electric Balloon Festival Hotline at 845-505-HOTT (4688). The Chamber's Facebook page (www.facebook.com/DutchessChamber) will also be staffed throughout Balloon Festival weekend - feel free to ask your question there as well so others can benefit from the answer too.
EXPERIENCE THE BALLOON FESTIVAL
LIKE NEVER BEFORE
To take a ride in a hot air balloon during the Balloon Festival, call Balloonmeister Bill Hughes of Blue Sky Balloons at 888-999-2461. Rides last about an hour, cost $225 and are extremely limited.
In the past, balloon rides have been used for engagements, weddings, client rewards, birthday/graduation gifts and a whole lot more. Don't miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime experience!
About Blue Sky Balloons: Blue Sky Balloons operates FAA certified balloons by FAA certified pilots and has been providing hot air balloon rides in the Hudson Valley, NY for over 40 years with a perfect safety record. They fly from the heart of the Hudson valley and are near New York City, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. Gift certificates, private rides, and group booking accommodations are available.
About Bill Hughes: Bill Hughes, a former Navy Pilot, with over 9,000 hours of flying
everything from jets to helicopters, got into ballooning in 1970. He
helped Malcolm Forbes make a transcontinental flight across the U.S. in
1973. The FAA designated him a Pilot Examiner and Safety Counselor.
Bill has served as "Balloonmeister"* for several major balloon events
and continues to do so, with a perfect safety record. He has flown
competitively throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Japan, winning
numerous events. Is the past Vice president and board member of the
Balloon Federation of America.
Think Local First!
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Then remember to think about ways to go even farther.