Q: How much is it to attend the Duluth Balloon Festival?
A: There is no charge to attend the festival as this is a FREE event brought to you by Kern and Kompany, and the City of Duluth.
Q: What time do the balloons launch?
A: Hot Air Balloons are subject to weather condititions and they have to be just right in order for the balloons to launch from Bayfront Festival Park. There are only two (2) launch windows per day and starting on Friday, September 16th through Sunday, September 18th, its possible to see the balloons launch between the hours of 7:00 a.m. - 7:45 a.m. and again from 5:00 p.m. - 5:45 p.m. each day.
Q: What needs to happen during those windows in order for the balloons to launch?
A: There are several factors that will allow for a launch and the following needs to happen:
1. Clouds must be a minimum of 2000 feet (meaning from the ground to the bottom layer of the clouds must be at least 2000' minimum).
2. There must be at least 3 miles of visibility (once the balloons are in the air they have to see 3 miles in all directions in order to find a potential landing spot).
3. Wind speed at Bayfront Festival Park must be under 9 miles per hour. Wind speed 250'up in the air must be under 13 miles per hour.
4. Wind direction must be off the Lake and blowing in a 340 degree to 180 degree direction clockwise. In essence as long as the wind is blowing off the lake and heading towards Proctor/Hermantown.
Q: What happens if the balloons don't launch?
A. We try for plan b. As long as the winds are under 9 miles per hour, we will give "tethered hot air balloon rides."
Q: How do I get a "tethered hot air balloon ride?"
A: You have to physically be at Bayfront Festival Park.
Q: Are there balloons at the park all day long?
A: There are baskets on display, and we will do our best to have at least one (1) Hot Air Balloon inflated at all times during the day. As long as the wind is under 9 miles per hour we will do a "rolling inflation," meaning our balloons will take turns inflating one at a time.
Q: What else is going on at Bayfront Festival Park while we wait for balloons?
A: There are TONS of activities for the entire family. There is the Craft Brew Village, Live Music, Kids Activities and Vendors. Also, Friday is Duluth Children's Museum Day, Saturday is the Kiwanis Club of Friendly Duluth Free Kite Fly Day, and Sunday is the YMCA Day and the Color Run 5K. Also, students from local Middle and High Schools will be launching "weather balloons" at approximately 12:00 Noon each day. There is tons to do each day some come daily for different free activities.
Q: What is the "Moon Glow" during the opening ceremonies on Friday, September 16th?
A: The "Moon Glow" is the process by which the balloons inflate and the burners fire and fill up the balloons. The balloons then glow like giant jack-o-lanters. In the event the wind is above 9 mph, the balloonists remove the envelopes and do "Basket Burns" which will shoot flames as high as 20' into the air. There is also LIVE MUSIC on the main stage all evening and all weekend long.
Q: What is an "Envelope?"
A: The "envelope" is actually the colorful balloon itself. The envelope is what holds the "air" and is measured in cubic feet. A small Hot Air Balloon will have an envelope that holds 50,000 cubic feet, whereas a large Hot Air Ballon will have an envelope that exceeds 110,000 cubic feet.
Q: Where can I find information on the CRAFT BREW VILLAGE?
A: Click here.
Q: How do I register for the COLOR RUN 5K?
A: Click here.