Festival of Ballooning’s future up in the air — Say it isn’t so!
No decision has been made yet, but there are reports that the Festival of Ballooning may disappear. The title sponsor, QuickChek, has announced they are pulling out, leaving the future of the event in doubt.
I’ve been to the festival at Solberg Airport in Readington several times and it is really one of those things that every New Jerseyan should experience at least once. When the balloons are all inflated prior to and during the liftoff, it is quite a sight to see - it’s majestic, even. Sure, it could get muddy and crowded, but that is part of what made it unique and it was very family friendly. Seeing the kids in awe of the huge balloons was pretty cool.
While some of the balloons were mainstays, like the giant panda, and there were always new balloons making their debuts to keep things interesting. There were also musical acts like Meat Loaf and the Beach Boys.
Festival director Howard Freeman says, "We have had some people kick the tires and nibble and for one reason or another it hasn't made sense or it's in a category that hasn't worked out." See more of his comments in Dan Alexander's piece here.
It would really be a shame if such a huge event that is so associated with New Jersey were to go away for good.
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