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 comments for “A Beautiful Weekend to Fly & Balloonist’s Prayer

  1. Debbie@Mountain Breaths
    October 22, 2012 at 6:17 am

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

  2. October 22, 2012 at 6:25 am

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

  3. October 22, 2012 at 6:42 am

    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
    October 22, 2012 at 6:53 am

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

  5. October 22, 2012 at 6:57 am

    :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. October 22, 2012 at 9:09 am

    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. October 22, 2012 at 9:49 am

    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. October 22, 2012 at 9:49 am

    Beautiful photography. Thanks for sharing.

  9. October 22, 2012 at 10:07 am

    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. October 22, 2012 at 10:49 am

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

  11. October 22, 2012 at 12:11 pm

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

  12. October 22, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    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. October 22, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    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. October 22, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    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. October 22, 2012 at 10:14 pm

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

  16. October 23, 2012 at 9:55 am

    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. October 23, 2012 at 11:04 am

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

  18. October 23, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    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. October 23, 2012 at 10:16 pm

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

  20. October 23, 2012 at 10:32 pm

    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. October 24, 2012 at 8:45 am

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

  22. October 24, 2012 at 1:58 pm

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

  23. October 25, 2012 at 10:22 pm

    Gorgeous balloons against that beautiful blue sky!

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