Balloon Fiesta features
Balloons will fill the skies
Balloon Fiesta celebrates 30 years
It's one of the UK's top outdoor events and the largest show of its kind in Europe - and it's 30 this year.
The Discovery Channel International Balloon Fiesta takes place from Thursday, 7 August to Sunday, 10 August 2008, at its traditional venue, Bristol’s Ashton Court Estate.
The Fiesta regularly draws crowds of up to half a million people from across the country, combining the spectacle of mass hot-air balloon ascents with a daily programme of entertainment and children’s activities - and it is all free of charge.
The Bristol International Balloon Fiesta was first held in 1979 in Ashton Court with just 29 balloons and a few thousand spectators.
This year the fiesta includes mass launches of 120 hot air balloons each morning and evening from Friday to Sunday (6am and 6pm, weather permitting), and the Night Glows which combine illuminated balloons, fireworks and music at 9.30pm on Thursday and Saturday.
There are also arena displays and entertainment throughout the day, such as The Flying Gunners display team and a display of model hot-air balloons from around Europe.
The ‘Heaven’ area gives Fiesta visitors a chance to take life at a slightly more relaxed pace. ‘Heaven’ became part of the event in 2004, as an area which provides quirky and innovative entertainment – almost a festival within a fiesta.
Event Director, Susan Tanner was awarded the prestigious Event Organiser of the Year trophy by fellow industry professionals in January.
The often weird but always wonderful, special shape balloons will be taking to the skies once more. Look out for Fiesta favourites including the Churchill dog, the Kiwi bird, the Stroud and Swindon house and the Scottish Piper.
last updated: 14/04/2008 at 15:11