*ALL HOT AIR BALLOON EVENTS ARE WEATHER PERMITTING.
Balloon Fest Safety Tips
As a Centralia Balloon Fest attendee, there are a few safety tips we would like you to know:
- No smoking. Discarded lit cigarettes or embers from ashes could melt or damage the balloon's fabric.
- Stay away from ropes. As the balloon inflates or glows, ropes will be held by their crew to guide the balloon. If wind hits the balloon, the rope could jerk or pull in any direction causing a trip or safety hazard. Don't walk over or under any ropes!
- Be aware of your surroundings and bring a flashlight. Centralia Balloon Fest is in a nature park with a large pond. There may be uneven ground and trip hazards and there aren't many lights after dark. As you watch the balloons, please pay attention to where you walk.
- Stay out of the way of balloon vehicles. The balloonists and crew drive into the park to inflate and then to chase the balloon after it takes off. They are watching out for you, but please watch out for them.
- Other park rules: No alcohol. No coolers. No pets. No bicycles, skateboards, or recreational vehicles.
Hot Air Balloons can only fly when weather conditions are safe. Winds above 10mph, lightning, precipitation, and developing weather are not safe for hot air balloons. The Balloonmeister and pilots check within a 30 mile radius - or further - depending on the weather conditions.
Best Time of Day
When the sun is rising and setting the winds are calmer, so all balloon related events are scheduled in the early morning or the early evening.
30 minutes before the scheduled balloon race, glow, or event, all of the balloonists, or pilots, meet with the Balloonmeister. They check-in for their flight, go over rules and regulations, and discuss the weather. This is when the decision is made on safe weather conditions.
Sometimes a balloon event is cancelled due to weather conditions. This is for the safety of the pilots, crew, passengers, and spectators. When a gust of wind catches an inflated balloon, it could damage the balloon or vehicles, or injure people or worse.
Centralia Balloon Fest schedules multiple races and multiple glows to ensure that balloon events happen each year. We hope you will be able to join us at each event to see all of the hot air balloons. We also schedule other family-friendly activities throughout the day to entertain thousands of people each year: food, crafts, car show, kids area, activities and concerts.