Hot-Air Balloons Pilots gathered at Tymor Park in Lagrange, New York for the 31st annual Hudson Valley Hot-Air Balloon Festival. The Hot Air Balloons drew hundreds of people each day to Dutchess County from September 2 - 4, 2022.
Photo Caption: Hot Air Balloon ride with Bottini Fuel / Credit: Hudson Valley Hot Air Balloon Festival 2022
Beautiful bright balloons took over the sky as pilots and guest riders flew into the clouds during the early morning hours of the festival. A total of 21 balloon pilots took part in the 2022 Hot-Air Balloon Fest. One of the organizers Rich Kleban spoke to the Goodie Drop before the fest began saying, "We have two pilots coming from Canada, really making this an international event." Kleban is the Vice President of the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce which has overseen the festival in recent years. Kleban also had said that 15,000 people plan to attend and it will leave a positive economic impact on vendors and local businesses.
The Pelayo family traveled all the way from Long Island, New York for a second time to come and see the balloons. Family member Tessa Pelayo told The Goodie Drop that she brought her dad along so he could go for a balloon ride this year.
Photo Caption: The Pelayo family enjoying the sights at the the 31st annual Hot Air Balloon Festival 2022 / Credit: Nile Clarke of the Goodie Drop
The Goodie Drop also had a chance to speak with Hot-Air Balloon Pilot Kimberly Field of Royalty Ballooning. Field has been a certified FAA Commercial Pilot since 2006. Her journey began as a fan of the sport gifting her mother with a hot-air balloon ride for her birthday. Later she began crewing for pilots for the next ten years before eventually deciding to learn how to fly. Fields said, "Every balloon flight is different. So we just learn everytime. In my opinion, ballooning is so romantic. Because what happens in a new romance? You just never know where your going...???"
“In my opinion, ballooning is so romantic."
Photo Caption: Hot Air Balloon Pilot Kimberly Field at the 31st annual Hot Air Balloon Festival 2022 / Credit: Nile Clarke of the Goodie Drop
HUDSON VALLEY AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL FOR 2022
Photo Caption: Hot Air Balloon Festival Photos From Facebook / Credit: Hudson Valley Hot Air Balloon Festival 2022
WEATHER, plays a big part in Ballooning. According to Poughkeepsie pilot Rich Hamilton from the "Rainbow With A View" you need good balloonable weather before take off. Hamilton said, "You need some speed but you don't want too much speed, we're fussy right!. You want something calm on the surface so you can land easily. A lot of wooded areas right. A balloon can land anywhere when its really slow, pretty much. But when it's faster winds like 8, 9 or 10 miles an hour, it's hard and you need a big field to land in."
Pilots also look at the general weather synopsis as well. The Balloonmeister makes the final call. This year's Balloonmeisters are Roger and Michele Hooper. The Hooper's love to fly their balloon "Limelite" out of East Fishkill, New York.
Photo Caption: Hot Air Balloon 🎈 weather station / Lucky House Band / Creations Made For You Vendor / Pilots from Airborne Adventures - Balloon Enthusiast, Dwight Cramer, Pilots from Rainbow With A View - Rich Hamilton and Wife Lori Hamilton at the 31st annual Hot Air Balloon Festival 2022 / Credit: Nile Clarke of the Goodie Drop
The balloon festival has been going strong for 31 years and has grown tremendously. The festival was originally started by Tom Smith and Bill Huges at the Dutchess County Airport in Wappingers Falls, NY. Smith's son Brian Smith also attended this year's event flying his ballon the "Hover Girl".
Here is a video from the festivities from 2015 in Poughkeepsie, New York. Link: https://youtu.be/y9q8NxoNsVI
For more information about the website: https://www.dcrcoc.org/balloonfesthv.org