The weekend looked to be promising, as the practice flights of the annual Hot Air Balloon Festival were successful Friday, but winds in the higher altitudes prevented Saturday and Sunday’s flights from lifting off.
In statements from Christian Adderson, Corporate Sales Manager for Mesquite Gaming, on Saturday and Sunday, the winds were blowing too much to ensure safety of balloon crews. “The safety of the pilots and spectators are the # 1 priority of the festival and the conditions did not dictate a safe launch for all parties involved. There were 5-6 balloons that did set up in launch field for the spectators to enjoy. We would like to thank the Mesquite Resort Association and Mesquite Gaming for their support of this event. We would like to thank the spectators and all the volunteers that came out this year to support the event.”
The breezes from above didn’t prevent the community and others from surrounding areas showing up and enjoying the setups that balloon owners provided.
The winds also prevented Saturday night’s Night Glow, according to attendees, which usually isn’t hampered by the winds.
Perhaps scheduling the Festival to another time of year, or closer to the spring, would benefit the event and provide more stable conditions. Adderson was unavailable to comment on this aspect as of Monday morning.
Below are photos submitted by Kris Zurbas. Anyone wishing to share their photos of this and other events are encouraged to share them to the MLN Facebook page.