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While the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) mandates that we fence in the balloon area for safety purposes, you can easily secure a prime viewing spot to view these magnificent balloons.
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Park admission for the Above Athens Balloon Festival is $5 per vehicle. The Sandy Creek Park Annual Permit can not be used for admission to the festival event. This is a CASH ONLY event. Tethered balloon rides cost $10 per person, CASH ONLY. Children's activities are free of charge. There are opportunities to purchase items from food trucks and business vendors.
No, pets are not permitted at this event. Vehicles with pets inside will not be permitted to enter Sandy Creek Park.
10 tethered balloons are scheduled to be on display and will offer rides throughout the event, weather permitting. Rides are $10 per person, CASH ONLY.
Children's activities, including face painting, balloon animals, educational programming, and gymnastics will be available free of charge. Food trucks and business vendors will sell various items. There will also be a live radio remote from Bulldog 93.3.
No, you may not bring alcohol.
Yes, however a selection of food trucks will be on site.
A tethered balloon ride is when the balloon is tied to the ground with three or four very strong ropes to keep the balloon from flying away. This allows us to lift and "fly" a large group of people of all ages at a specific location. Participants must sign a waiver if they intend to ride a balloon.
Anyone of reasonable health and who can get in and out of the basket can participate. Prior to being allowed to participate, each participant (or parent/guardian for those under 18 years of age) must sign an Agreement to Participate / Waiver of Responsibility for tethered ride passengers. The pilot & crew always reserves the right to limit who or how many can get into the balloon basket.
Tethered rides are available weather permitting. We inflate only when the winds are around five mph or less. When the winds are any faster the balloon becomes difficult to control and can be quite unsafe. There cannot be any thunderstorm type activity within 50 miles of the tether location. The pilot will make all final weather determinations.
Tethered flights usually fly between 25 feet and 100 feet. The exact height is determined by a number of factors including wind, anchor points, number of passengers, etc. The pilot will determine the exact height according to conditions at the time of the event.
Depending on their combined weight, two to four persons at a time may ride in the balloon.
Tethered balloons will be on display & offer rides throughout the day Saturday, September 28, 2019. Balloons need stable winds to operate effectively and the hours just following sunrise and approximately 2 hours before sunset are the best for finding this.
The colorful envelope (balloon) is usually made of nylon or polyester that is tightly woven and coated with a special substance (just like parachutes!) A steel or aluminum basket frame is wrapped in wicker and attached to the balloon by steel or Kevlar cables. The unique materials allow for flexibility and strength.
By heating the air inside the balloon, the balloon floats upward because hot air rises. As the air is allowed to cool, the balloon begins to slowly come down. Propane gas is used to heat the air.
Most balloons are larger than your house. They hold from 19,000 to 211,000 cubic feet of air and loom from 50 to 100 feet tall. The average balloon height is 70 feet.
A balloon flies better in cooler weather since the hot air gets a better "lift." Balloonists usually fly just after dawn or before dusk, because there is less wind at these times. While it may seem like there is no wind on the ground, there may be higher level winds that could ground the balloons
Balloon Pilot Certificates are awarded to candidates who pass a written examination, obtain a prescribed number of hours operating a balloon, make a solo flight to altitude, pass a flight test, and submit a medical statement.
When the time comes to put the balloon up, the envelope is removed from the bag and laid out in a long line on the ground. The burners are attached to the uprights, and the basket is attached to the cables on the bottom of the envelope. An engine driven fan is used to inflate the envelope with cold air. When partially inflated, the air is heated by a burner and the envelope rises above the basket. With further heating, there is sufficient 'lift' for the balloon to fly.
To heat the air, the burners are fueled by propane gas, much the same as you probably use in your backyard barbecue grill. The burners do not run continuously; they are only used intermittently to heat the air to maintain the required lift.
The event will conclude with all the hot air balloons glowing like huge lanterns against the night sky.