Great Reno Balloon Race

Great Reno Balloon Race
The Great Reno Balloon Race is an annual hot air balloon race and festival that takes place at the Rancho San Rafael Park in Reno, Nevada, United States. It is billed as the largest free hot air ballooning event in the world.

The Great Reno Balloon Race was founded in 1982. The first festival featured a mere 20 balloons. Over the years, it has grown to become one of the most popular events in Nevada, as well as the largest free hot air balloon festival in the United States. It attracts approximately 140,000 attendees every year and draws about 100 entrants from across the United States as well as abroad.

So, what does the Great Reno Balloon Race has to offer? A lot of people are drawn by hot air balloon competitions, but the festival isn’t all about competing. Its main goal is to show the beauty and grace hot air balloons and to celebrate the joy of flight. That’s why many festival-goers get to the park as early as 5 am to witness Glow Shows.

Glow Shows involve glowing balloons that act as a beacon, helping early birds find their way to the launch field. If you want to see something special, you should attend the Super Glow Show on Friday morning. It features over 20 balloons that glow and twinkle to music.

The Glow Show is followed by the Dawn Patrol. It is a launch of a handful of hot air balloons that are qualified to fly in the dark. Pre-dawn air conditions are unstable, which makes the Dawn Patrol somewhat dangerous to the pilots. The balloons that are not qualified to participate in the Dawn Patrol take off at about 7 am. Mass Ascension Launches are just as spectacular as Dawn Patrols, although in a different way.

Another highlight of the Great Reno Balloon Race is the E.L. Cord Tissue Paper Balloon Launch. It features over 2,000 students who release colorful hand-made hot air balloons that they made themselves as part of their school curriculum. The festival also offers tethered rides for children available for a small donation to the Children’s Miracle Network, the Balloon Boulevard with souvenirs, crafts, food and drinks, and an epic pajama party with the Bed-Head Competition.

Great Reno Balloon Race

Photo: Valerie L.




Related Articles