The skies around Rimbey will be filled with hot air balloons this weekend, with plenty of fun to be had under those skies as well.
Fourteen balloonists will fire up their flying vessels from Friday to Sunday in conjunction with the Rimbey Expo being held at the community centre and arena. Last year was the first time in many years that a trade fair had been held in Rimbey, with a ballooning festival added onto the event.
“The balloon events were wonderful. I think it really overwhelmed the town,” said Rimbey and District Chamber of Commerce president Jackie Stratton.
Balloons are scheduled to be launched at 8 a.m. each day and at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, weather permitting. At 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, balloons are scheduled to be tethered with the burners lit up to light up the balloons in the dark; if it is too windy, the balloons will stay on the ground and be lit up to resemble giant candles.
The expo runs from 2 to 9 p.m. on Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. There will be face painting, cotton candy and a balloon photo booth. Admission is $2 per person, with children six and under admitted free.
Pancake breakfasts will be held from 7 to 10 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. A 50/50 golf ball drop from a balloon will also be held at the expo, with $1,100 to be won.