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Monday, December 6, 2021

Adirondack Balloon Festival (September 2022) New York


There is something so magical about hot air balloons. It's a bucket list item for many to go soaring through the sky in a hot air balloon (and one I checked off while in Arizona). If going ballooning isn't in your budget or desires, I at least highly recommend heading to a balloon festival to see the balloons blown up and in flight. If you live in the northeast, there are a ton of amazing options. If Lake George is within reach, the Adirondack Balloon Festival is an amazing and free family-friendly event that needs to be on your 2022 calendar. 

The Adirondack Balloon Festival is one of those events that can be molded to fit into whatever kind of weekend adventure you are looking for. Romantic morning watching the sunrise in the morning - yep. Family-friendly day adventure - absolutely. An evening watching the balloons lit up - definitely. Stop by for an hour or pack a picnic and chairs and stay for the evening. It is an awesome event that should be on everyone's bucket list. 



It was early fall and we were in between beach weekends and leaf-peeping adventures. When my mom mentioned heading to New York for a hot air balloon festival, we happily tagged along on the fun, appreciating the fact that this was an event I didn't have to plan. I didn't know what to expect and truth be told, I didn't do any research prior to the weekend. I wish I did because although we had such a great time, I plotted so many ways to make this event even more fun. 

It's held at an airport, so there is a lot of room for parking, balloons, and hanging out. Next time, I am setting up shop for the afternoon. I'm bringing chairs and tables, snacks and wine, picnic blankets, and everything I need to hang out and enjoy the view. 



One thing that makes this event really special is that it's free (donations of any amount are accepted at the entrance). The event is entirely run by volunteers and it's amazing to see all the work put into making this event happen. There is a ton of room and you can walk around and see the balloons or simply set up a spot to enjoy the evening. The event takes place over an entire weekend with morning balloon launches and evenings spent inflating and lighting up the balloons. We never made it to the morning launches but the evening lighting event was a fantastic way to enjoy the balloons and the view without waking up with the sunrise. 



We had a great afternoon at the event and I have big plans for returning with a picnic and an early alarm. Here is everything you need to know to plan for next year's event. 

Need To Know

2022 dates: September 22-25, 2022

    Typical Schedule

    Thursday: Street party
    Friday: Evening launch
    Saturday: Sunrise launch and PM static display/glow up event
    Sunday: Sunrise launch

    Cost: Free! Donations accepted at the entrance gate

    Where:  Floyd Bennet Memorial Airport -  Queensbury, NY

    Crowds: Yes, It's a big event drawing upwards of 150,000 people over 4 days. This event has also been named one of the Top 100 events in North America.

    Dogs and Drones: not allowed! Leave the dogs and drones at home, unfortunately!

    Camping: not allowed - RVs are welcome to park and hang out for the day!

    What Can I Bring? You can bring blankets, lawn chairs, coolers, etc - make it yours!
    There are typically food and craft vendors on-site (canceled in 2021/COVID)

    Arrive Early! Arrive early and pack your patience, as this is a FREE Event with very large crowds and traffic

    Weather Restrictions All ballooning activities are weather-dependent (as they say, ballooning is a fair-weather sport). Balloons will not fly in the rain and winds must also be light (ideal conditions are for wind speeds to be 3-5 MPH). Flight updates are provided on their Facebook site and on twitter for each flight.

    Rides? The Festival does not schedule or book rides. Some pilots offer private rides and information can be found on the "BALLOONS & RIDES" section of the website - If their phone number and or email is listed, then they are willing to accept passengers.

    Find out more at https://www.adirondackballoonfest.org/





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