Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta October 5-13, 2013

Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta October 5-13, 2013

HISTORY:

The balloon fiesta began in 1972 as the highlight of a 50th birthday celebration for 770 KOB Radio. Radio station manager Dick McKee asked Sid Cutter, owner of Cutter Flying Service and the first person to own a hot air balloon in New Mexico, if KOB could use his new hot-air balloon as part of the festivities. The two began discussing ballooning, along with conversation and help from Oscar Kratz, and McKee asked what the largest gathering of hot air balloons to date had been. 19 balloons in England, Cutter replied. Kratz asked “Can we get 19 here?” Cutter agreed to try. He got commitments from 21 pilots, but bad weather kept some of them from arriving in time. The first fiesta ended up as a gathering of 13 balloons on April 8, 1972, sponsored by KOB. The first event was located in the parking lot of the Coronado Center Shopping Mall with 20,000 spectators and with balloonists from Arizona, California, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada and Texas taking part. McKee, Cutter, and Kratz are the three men who had originally started the balloon races.[2]The first fiesta incorporated a “Roadrunner-Coyote Balloon Race” (a “hare-and-hounds” race elsewhere in the world) with 1 balloon being the “Roadrunner” and the others being “Coyote” balloons (the “Roadrunner” balloon was actually emblazoned with likenesses of both Warner Bros. characters). The winner of the race – the “Coyote” that landed closest to the Roadrunner – was Don Piccard of the noted aerostation dynasty, flying a balloon of his company’s design and construction (his wife also placed in the race). This race has continued as part of the Balloon Fiesta today.

The next year Albuquerque hosted the first World Hot-Air Balloon Championships in February and the fiesta became an international event. In 1975 Albuquerque was looking at hosting the World Championships again, but the event was scheduled for October. So the fiesta was moved to correspond with the championships. To maintain interest in Albuquerque’s bid to host the championships, a balloon rally was held in February of that year. Autumn being a far better flying time than February, the event has remained in early October to the present day.

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The Balloon Fiesta grew each year for decades, and today is the largest balloon convention in the world. The number of registered balloons reached a peak of 1,019 in 2000, prompting the Balloon Fiesta Board to limit the number to 750 starting in 2001,[3] citing a desire for “quality over quantity”. The limit was changed to 600 in 2009 — citing recent growth in the city and a loss of landing zones. On any given day during the festival, up to 100,000 spectators may be on the launch field where they are provided the rare opportunity to observe inflation and take off procedures. Countless more people gather at landing sites all over the city to watch incoming balloons.

 

2013 Schedule

Saturday October 5

Morning Session

Evening Session

5:456:30
6:45
7:00
8:00
Dawn Patrol Show, presented by Route 66 Casino Hotelmore…
Krispy Kreme Morning Glow
Opening Ceremonies
Mass Ascension, more…
AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
2:004:00
5:45
6:00

8:00

America’s Challenge Gas Balloon Race Inflation,more…
AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
Twilight Twinkle Glow TM
America’s Challenge Gas Balloon Race Launch,more…
AfterGlowTM Fireworks Show, presented by AlbuquerqueJournalmore…
Sunday October 6

Morning Session

Evening Session

5:456:30
7:00
8:00
9:00
11:00
Dawn Patrol Show, presented by Route 66 Casino Hotelmore…
Krispy Kreme Morning Glow
Mass Ascension, more…
AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
Fiesta of Wheels Car Show
Balloon Fiesta Pin Trading (Group Tour Tent)
4:00
5:45
6:30
8:00
AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
Balloon Glow
AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
AfterGlowTM Fireworks Show, presented by Albuquerque Journalmore…
Monday October 7

Morning Session

Evening Session

5:45
7:00
Dawn Patrol, more…
Flying Competition
No events
Tuesday October 8 – Pepsi Day

Morning Session

Evening Session

5:45
7:00
Dawn Patrol, more…
Flying Competition
No events
Wednesday October 9

Morning Session

Evening Session

5:456:30
7:00
Dawn Patrol Show, presented by Route 66 Casino Hotelmore…
Krispy Kreme Morning Glow
Flight of the Nations Mass Ascension
No events
Thursday October 10

Morning Session

Evening Session

5:45
7:00
8:00
8:00
Dawn Patrol, more…
Special Shape Rodeo TM
Flying Competition
AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
5:45
8:00
Special Shape GlowdeoTM
AfterGlowTM Fireworks Show, presented by Albuquerque Journalmore…
Friday October 11

Morning Session

Evening Session

5:45
7:00
8:00
8:00
Dawn Patrol, more…
Special Shape RodeoTM presented by Wells Fargo Bank
Flying Competition
AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
5:458:00Special Shape GlowdeoTM, presented by Comcast Spotlight 
AfterGlowTM Fireworks Show, presented by Albuquerque Journalmore…
Saturday October 12

Morning Session

Evening Session

5:456:30
7:00
8:00
11:00
12:00
Dawn Patrol Show, presented by Route 66 Casino Hotelmore…
Krispy Kreme Morning Glow
Mass Ascension, more…
AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
Balloon Fiesta Pin Trading (Group Tour Tent)
Balloon Fiesta Music Fiesta-Darius Rucker & Special Guests
5:00
5:45
8:00
AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
Night MagicTM Glow
AfterGlowTM Fireworks Show, presented by Albuquerque Journalmore…
Sunday October 13: Propane Day – Presented by Airgas USA, LLC

Morning Session

5:456:30
7:00
Dawn Patrol Show, presented by Route 66 Casino Hotelmore…
Krispy Kreme Morning Glow
Farewell Mass Ascension
No events

 

For more information and tickets please visit: http://www.balloonfiesta.com