Yesterday was the opening night of the 1st annual Bloomington Balloon Fest at the Monroe County 4H Fairgrounds. The Kiwanis Club is hosting it as a fundraiser for the Bloomington Boys & Girls Clubs & for Riley Children’s Hospital. The event runs through this weekend.
Our daughter Kristi told us about the event & we all decided to attend, afterall, who doesn’t like hot air balloons. I was really looking forward to seeing the Night Glow portion of the festival where the balloon heaters light up in synchronization to the music of a live band.
As with many first time events, there were glitches. Providing a means of transportation for folks with handicaps to get from the parking lot to the balloon lift-off field would be nice. The walking distance was hard on my mother & we also noticed another gentleman really struggling with the walk. Entrances into the fairgrounds needed to be more clearly marked for attendees. More trash receptacles were needed & a bigger variety of food vendors would have been appreciated. If the sponsors can work through those issues, this will indeed be a wonderful annual family attraction.
Still, all problems aside, this was a fantastic way to view the balloons up close & personal. People were allowed access to the lift-off field while balloons were being readied to inflate & during the actual inflation. It was fascinating to see & we were surprised at how fast the majority of the balloons went from being balled up to lifting off. The two much larger Captain America & scarecrow hot air balloons took more time & effort.
Unfortunately, the Night Glow didn’t go off as planned. By the time the bands’ sound man had everything up & operating, it was getting well into the evening & some of the balloons were already being deflated & packed away until the following day. We did get to see a few of the balloons occasionally light up their heaters, making the balloon glow. The lighter the balloons colors, the more richly it glowed. A very pretty sight to see. By this time of the evening though our other family members had left. Only my mother, Don & I remained.
We did meet up again with our youngest daughter Bobbi-Leigh back at my mothers after picking up a bucket of chicken for a late dinner. Bobbi is our one child who doesn’t like the fact that mom & pop are road gypsies & is always reluctant to see us leave. We hope it becomes easier for her As Time Goes By.
Here’s lookin’ at you kid……………………