Celebrating 50 years of the International Balloon Fiesta

A hot air balloon at our very own parking lot to preview Albuquerque's yearly hot air balloon festival
Published: Sep. 26, 2022 at 3:15 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - It’s the 50th anniversary of Albuquerque’s International Balloon Fiesta, and a big, colorful visitor dropped by the studio to celebrate!

Arizona balloon pilot and an Arizona Balloon Club member Sally Heinrich said, “Most events we go to have 30 balloons, Albuquerque has almost 650 balloons. 120 special shapes, 9 gas balloons, and 22 different nations are represented.” The Balloon Fiesta Committee has already capped this year’s number of participants.

It's the 50th anniversary of the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta!
It's the 50th anniversary of the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta!(Arizona's Family)

“300 pilots applied and didn’t get in this year,” Heinrich said. “A lot of people wanted to come!” The Arizona’s Family drone flew over the balloon in the parking lot to get the full scope of the aircraft. Heinrich said that balloon flying is something that’s been in her family for generations.

“Mom first crewed in ‘72 and bought a balloon in 1976,” she said. “She got her first flight with Bill Cutter of Cutter Aviation.” Heinrich added that at the festival, balloons will be back to back in the air next week. To learn more about the event, click here.