Every year over the azure Autumn skies of Albuquerque, New Mexico, a riot of colour hits the skies above the Rio Grande valley with the annual Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.
Beginning in 1972 with a mere 13 balloons, the festival grew to over 1000 participants in the year 2000, forcing organizers to accept only quality over quantity, and capping the event to 750 of the most colourful and elaborate entrants.
Taking place every year at the vast 78-acre Balloon Fiesta Park, the site fills every autumn with something in the area of 100,000 spectators taking advantage of the perfect pocket of balloon-riding weather known as the ‘Albuquerque Box,’ in what has become the biggest balloon convention in the world.
It’s a fitting tribute to humankind’s fascination with flight, which took its maiden voyage in France with the Montgolfier brothers pioneering balloon flight in 1783, preceding the Wright Brothers by well over a hundred years!
Human imagination is just not meant to be bound to the earth, so free your mind and reach for the skies. Having never done this myself, all I can say is TAKE ME!