For nine days in October, the skies over the city of Albuquerque are transformed by thousands of hot air balloons. Over the course of the event, visitors will see dozens of hot air balloon ascensions. The Dawn Patrol and the Morning Glow feature balloons lit up in the still-dark morning sky. At The Special Shape Rodeo, you will see balloons shaped like animals, cartoon characters, and anything you can imagine. The America’s Challenge Gas Balloon Race, modeled after the world’s oldest air race, pits challengers in special gas balloons against each other as they race to see who can travel the farthest. But perhaps the most spectacular event of the week is the Mass Ascension, where all the balloons in the festival are launched into the sky at once. This happens not once, but on five different days during the Fiesta.
Guests can visit the Balloon Discovery Center to learn about the science of ballooning first hand. Get in the basket and light the burners in a simulated flight, learn why balloon baskets are made of wicker, and learn why Albuquerque is the Balloon Capital of the world.
Don’t forget your camera. Keep snapping during the fiesta and you could win Cindy Petrehn Memorial Photo Contest!