Balloon FAQs

  1. Flight Times
  2. Weather Conditions
  3. Best Time of Year
  4. Pilot Certification
  5. Equipment Safety
  6. Balloon Rides
  7. Locations
  8. Tethers
  9. Glows
  10. Festivals

Flight Times

Hot Air Balloon flights (can) occur twice a day; just after sunrise and about an hour so prior to sundown. These are the times when the air is most stable and will provide a safe, enjoyable flight. Flights generally last about an hour, depending on various conditions. Ballooning is largely recreational in nature; thus, many flights happen on weekends and holidays.

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Weather Conditions

Balloons don’t fly in rain, fog, snow or wind above 7 mph. Balloons don’t fly when there is a threat of thunderstorms in the area. There are other conditions that can affect the decision to fly or not to fly. These are considered to ensure a safe flight.

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Best Time of Year

Balloons can fly all year; however, late spring through late fall provides the most enjoyable and scenic flights. Observing the colorful fall foliage from a hot air balloon is truly breathtaking.
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Pilot Certification

Balloon pilots are certified by the FAA, in the same manner as airplane pilots. They must take instruction, pass written and practical tests and be re-examined periodically.

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Equipment Safety

Balloons are aircraft and, as such, are regulated by the FAA. They must meet manufacturing standards and are subject to periodic inspections, just like a commercial jet liner.

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Balloon Rides

Are a perfect way to celebrate a special occasion, birthday, engagement, anniversary or just because. Details are available from any association member pilot. Refer to the rides section of this web site.

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Locations

Other than the balloon events noted in this web site, each association member pilot has his/her own launch sites.

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Tethers

This operation involves attaching several strong ropes to the balloon and to points on the ground. The balloon can rise a limited distance and then return to the ground. Passengers can be taken “up” to experience the feeling of a balloon ride. Tethers are typically done at picnics, reunions and other outdoor celebration events.

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Glows

special crowd pleaser, this event involves several balloons being inflated at dusk. The balloons remain secured to the ground. In the dark, the burners will be “fired up” which illuminates the colorful fabric from within. This is quite spectacular; and the greater the number of balloons, the prettier the picture.
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Festivals

Usually held on weekends, these events bring together balloons, entertainment, food, craft vendors and many other fun things to do. Every festival is different in terms of number of balloons as well as other activities/events offered. The number of balloons can range from less than 10 to more than 700! Check our events page for some of the festivals being held.

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