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Flying over L/A - It is Balloon!

Real Estate Agent with Real Estate

 Those of you from the old days may remember the the series F-Troop that aired in the mid 60's.  The character Chief Wild Eagle used the line "It is Balloon" quite often when he saw a hot air balloon.  For the younger crowd I'm sure L/A brings to mind the Lewiston / Auburn area of Maine.  The twin cities are always referred to as LA and this weekend was the 15th annual Great Falls Balloon Festival.

We travel to Maine quite often during the summer months and have been in town on several occasions during festival weekend.   This year we decided to do the overnight run so we would be there for the first launch scheduled at 6:00am  Friday morning. 

Launch conditions were perfect and the first Balloon was in the sky at about 6:15.  The field at the newly named Simard-Payne Memorial Park was filled with Balloonist preparing for lift off.  Below a female crew hustles to get their balloon ready for lift off.  It is bit of work to roll out the balloon, use fans to fill the massive area and heat the air so it can lift the pilot and passengers into the sky.

As more and more balloons filled the sky it was noticeable that most seemed to descend shortly after take off.  We were wondering if the Hot Air Balloon Rides were that short so we wandered over to a foot bridge crossing the Androscoggin River between Lewiston and Auburn we found our answer. 


No, they were not dropping off passengers before continuing their journey, the Balloonist were dipping down to allow spectators a photo opportunity over the river.



Teri Eckholm
Boardman Realty - White Bear Lake, MN
REALTOR Serving Mpls/St Paul North & East Metro
Dan--They used to have balloon races as part of the winter carnival in late January in Minnesota. We would go and take photos of the launch. It was back in the 80's and I think my fingers are still frozen. (I had to remove my gloves with a 20 below wind chill to shoot adjust the SLR camera.) Your weather looks like you had a picture perfect weekend. The balloons are beautiful.
Aug 19, 2007 11:28 AM
Suzanne Sands
Pavao Real Estate - Somerset, MA
Somerset MA Real Estate


That is so beautiful, did you go for a ballon ride?

Aug 19, 2007 12:28 PM
No Longer Active
Real Estate - Fallon, MT
Teri... 20 below sounds a bit cool... I'm Hot Blooded so I like cooler temps. When I'm in Maine in the winter time it can be bone chilling cold but your temps sound worse.  Think Mainewas in the 55-60 range Friday morning,  Nice and comfy!
Aug 19, 2007 12:29 PM
No Longer Active
Real Estate - Fallon, MT

Suzanne... No, after blogging away Thursday night I went to bed around 10:30 and was up at 12:30 getting ready to go.... Drove overnight and was a bit tired when we arrived but used my second wind during the launch.  After that it was off to the cabin for a nap.... Slept from 9:00 - Noon.

Aug 19, 2007 12:33 PM
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert
Dan, that is an awsume sight.  I have never been up in a balloon, and even though I am not a fan of heights, I would still love to go up in one someday.
Aug 19, 2007 01:56 PM
No Longer Active
Real Estate - Fallon, MT
George,  I've never been up in a balloon either...  They did announce Friday morning that there were a few spaces available but at $175 each we passed this time.  Once the market turns around we'll spend a little.  Wonder if Re/Max agents get a free ride, they had two balloons that went up.
Aug 19, 2007 11:30 PM
Susie Roscoe
Signature Realty Associates - Brandon, FL
Real Estate Specialist | Brandon, FL
Beautiful scenery!!  It's been awhile since I've seen a balloon race...they were so cool but started so early!!  THANKS for sharing the photos and bringing up some great memories!!
Aug 20, 2007 01:03 AM
Thesa Chambers
West + Main - Bend, OR
Principal Broker - Licensed in Oregon
we have balloons over Bend each year - but this year... well they were stormed out with thunder and lighting - I love to watch the balloons as the sun rises.
Aug 20, 2007 06:15 PM