A Beautiful Weekend to Fly & Balloonist’s Prayer

I sharing my photos of the Carolina BalloonFest from last year.

I haven’t had a chance to edit my 600+ photos {gulp}

from this weekend’s 39th annual Balloonfest .

A colorful, fun event and the Carolina Balloonfest is second oldest hot-air balloon festival in the country~ with 50 Hot Air Balloons and Mass Ascensions, a Balloon Glow, Tethered & Hot Air rides, and all day festivities including live entertainment held in Statesville, NC.

We attended the Saturday morning Fly In & Competition.

 It was a crisp (translation: a chilly 42 degrees :) morning~  perfect weather & conditions for the calm thermal atmosphere needed for balloon flight!

The competition involves the balloons trying to navigate to hit a mark on the ground, by dropping or throwing a small sandbag with a colored streamer, coming close as possible to the marked field without touching the ground.

The Ring-Toss competition is fun to watch with pilots attempting to toss or drop a 12″ ring on a 23’ pole.

This year’s festival was dedicated to honor the life of Pilot Edward Ristaino who died in a balloon accident/crash at a Georgia festival in March, while taking skydivers aloft when a sudden storm appeared.

He was able to send the balloon to a higher altitude from which the skydivers were able to parachute safely, but his balloon was sucked into the storm.

  Edward Ristaino was the owner and pilot of ‘Normie’, the ‘Lake Norman Monster’ balloon which could be seen flying around Lake Norman on most weekends~

The Balloonist’s Prayer

“May the winds welcome you with softness
May the sun bless you with it’s warm rays
May you fly so high and so well
That God will join you in laughter
And set you gently back again
Into the loving arms of Mother Earth.”

Thank you for your visit, I’m joining:

A Southern Daydreamer for Outdoor Wednesday~

The Tablescaper for Seasonal Sundays~

Little Red House for Mosaic Monday~

23 responses to “A Beautiful Weekend to Fly & Balloonist’s Prayer

  1. Debbie@Mountain Breaths

    Beautiful Mary! Every year, I say we are going to attend a balloon festival. Perhaps in 2013 :-) xo Debbie

  2. This is such a beautiful post to read and see as I’m starting my day. Thank you Mary!

  3. Beautiful post Mary and lovely tribute to Edward Ristaino and his balloon. Some of my fondest memories are of crewing for a friend who flew a Barnes balloon. Had some lovely flights, too! Thanks for the memories!

  4. Happier Than A Pig in Mud

    Gorgeous colors! Love the big Jack-O-Lantern:@)

  5. :D LOVE the balloons. Wow, Mary…you have tons of photos to edit from this year’s balloon race! What a perfect weekend. We had a fantastic one, too!!!

    Have a great week!

  6. Stunning photography! What a fabulous event! I went to a Scarecrow Fest over the weekend and couldn’t wait to get home to edit my 100+ pictures…my husband just about took the camera away, ha! Thanks for sharing so many cool shots!

  7. a balloon festival and competitions – amazing! looks like fun! the colours are wonderful. We went for a balloon flight years ago, and friends of ours went ballooning when they were in Africa. Have a wonderful week, I am linking up to you through Mosaic Monday.

  8. Beautiful photography. Thanks for sharing.

  9. Mary, your images are so crisp and full of color. What a marvelous sight! I’ve never been on a hot air balloon. Have you? Thanks for sharing these photos. Look forward to seeing the one’s you took this year.

  10. Mary, the balloons are beautiful against the crisp blue fall sky. Olive

  11. I’d love to go for a ride in a hot air balloon! Beautiful photos, Mary. xo

  12. Your photos are astonishing. I love going up in hot air balloons, the sense of freedom is amazing. Any time I see an opportunity, I jump on it.

  13. Outstanding photos! The one with the straight up shot of the yellow/orange/red/white balloon is stunning….could be the cover photo for a book on ballooning!

  14. I have always wanted to go to a balloon festival. This one looks just plain wonderfull! I wish so much that I had your “camera eye”.

  15. They are all so pretty. Do you get a stiff neck from looking up:):)

  16. What a wonderful post to read first thing in the morning. Your photos are fabulous and bring back many memories of flying with my sister. Floating in the sky in her Piccard balloon “Autumn Faze” in the early morning stillness. The sound of the blast valve of the furnace breaking the silence. Thank you such a lovely post.

  17. So many wonderful balloons to admire. I loved that you are sharing them in your post. You have captured them perfectly.

  18. Oh my…did not know that there was a Carolina balloon fest!!…We have always wanted to “ride in a balloon”….So many wonderful and creative balloons…your photography is perfection Mary!!!

  19. Wow!! your photos are absolutely beautiful!! The colors are so vibrant! another beautiful post!! thank you, I so enjoyed it!

  20. What fabulous pictures!! We have a balloon fest near us, but I have never been…this makes me want to go to the next one!!

  21. What an event! Fantastic photography ~ (A Creative Harbor) ^_^

  22. Oh, I’m mesmerized with all these balloons. Hope I’ll get to do that sometime! Thanks for the fun!

  23. Gorgeous balloons against that beautiful blue sky!

Thanks for your comments~ they make my day :)

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