It’s Back Paris Balloon and Music Festival is Almost Here: Do You Also Want to Ride Balloons?

Hot air ballooning is fun pretty much all year round, but September is when the weather is ideal. Cooler air arrives as summer winds die down, which is welcome when you’re standing next to actual flames.

Rain is uncommon, and the skies are usually clear and cool at night. You may even notice some leaves turning new colors of orange and yellow as you glide overhead in your gondola.

September is, thus, when most hot air balloon events are held. They vary greatly; some serve as county fairs complete with rides and an abundance of food on sticks, while others honor the history of the area. Take a look at the top balloon festivals in the United States, but remember to leave your drones at home (they’ll be confiscated).

Great Reno Balloon Race
Nevada’s Capital City of Reno
On the night of September 9-11, 2001
They once played Balloon Blackjack in the sky at the Great Reno Balloon Race, which is celebrating its 40th year this year and claims to be the largest free hot air ballooning event in the world (this is Reno, after all).

This year’s three-day festival kicks off at 5 a.m. each day with Glow Shows, in which tethered balloons are lit from within, followed by a dawn flight set to music by the few balloons that are equipped to fly at night. A mass launch of one hundred balloons occurs daily, and for five dollars, kids can take a tethered ride into the sky in support of charity (no dice for adults, sadly).
Free and open to the public

Ravenna, Ohio’s annual balloon festival
15-18 September
The Oak Rubber Company in Ravenna, Ohio, was one of the country’s leading producers of toy rubber balloons from 1917 until its closure in 1993. (the employee party photos are a trip).

Float-filled children’s and adult parades, a community breakfast, and a fair with craft tents, amusement rides, a jeep display, helicopter flights, and fireworks make up today’s Balloon-A-Fair, which honors the influential industry with a genuine community blowout.

As usual, there will be two hot air balloon releases, plus a brand new balloon glow on Friday evening. In addition, Claw’d the Crazy Crab Balloon, a giant crab balloon that appears on weekends.

The sky filled with balloons over Bay Harbor
Locale: Bay Harbor, Michigan
When: September 16-17
Balloons over Bay Harbor is only in its third year (the first was in 2019) in Michigan, but it already has a reputation as one of the most impressive sights in the state.

As the sun rises, balloons float above Little Traverse Bay in Lake Michigan, creating a mirror effect on the calm waters below.

There are flights during the day, glows on the marina lawn at night, and social gatherings for the pilots and crew. In addition, there will be a 3-kilometer (1.9-mile) fun run, musical performances, opportunities to chat with pilots, and, in a unique twist, balloon painters.
Free and open to the public

Colorado’s Snowmass Valley has an annual balloon festival.
Between the dates of September 16-18
More than 30 balloons will be launched daily near Aspen for the 46th year of this free Rocky Mountain event.

It's Back Paris Balloon and Music Festival is Almost Here

And here’s a chance to get some exercise: visitors may see the launches from the greatest vantage points by hiking or biking the trails in Snowmass. There are also three parking lots available if you choose to sit in your car and take in the view.

The field is public, and there will be a food truck there so you can get nice and close to the action and warm up in the hot air.
Free and open to the public
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