This past weekend we decided to drive up to Cave Creek AZ for their annual hot air balloon festival. They advertised tethered balloon rides, inflatable rides/bounce house, obstacle course, and night time inflating of the hot air balloons. Of course I played this off as a treat for our kids, but truth be known I wanted to go for the photo op. I’m sure my wife had no clue. 🙂
Upon arriving the first priority was parking. Naturally there was nothing close so we had to park out in the north 40. I’m willing to guess we walked about half mile from our parking spot to the entrance. First lesson learned, arrive early.
After paying our entrance fee we began to walk around and look at the balloons in various stages of inflation. The first thing I noticed was how close people were able to get to the balloons. No taped off areas or ropes. Not what I expected.
My wife was kind enough to take the kids over to the play area for awhile so I could grab some shots. As the sun was going down, I secured my spot on photog row and began hitting the shutter. Being satisfied with those shots, I packed up and made my way to the balloons. Figured I would take the opportunity to get up close and personal. By this time my hands were fairly numb. Second lesson learned, bring gloves next time. I finished up grabbing a few close shots and met up with the family.
Next stop the hot chocolate line. Twenty five minutes later we had our hot chocolate/hand warmers. There was a night time skydiving jump scheduled which would of been fun to see. However the kids were shaking from the cold so we bailed. Third lesson learned, make sure kids bring heavier coats and gloves next time.
Seeing the ballons light up at night was a real treat. If all goes well I’m hoping to plan a trip to Albuquerque NM this October for their balloon festival (the granddaddy of them all). See info here if interested: http://www.balloonfiesta.com/
Until next time…