Since Wednesday, the Boise skyline has been invaded by an cohort of festive ornaments, otherwise known as hot air balloons. Dotting the horizon, these hot air balloons have travelled from all over the United States to lift off in Boise, Idaho over the years. Many have come to believe these hot air balloons have come to symbolize the local and friendly nature of the city.
This past week marked the 26th Annual Spirit of Boise Air Balloon Festival. From Wednesday, Aug. 30 to Sunday, Sept. 3, Boise hosted a free event at Ann Morrison Park featuring over 25 hot air balloons. The main two events, morning lift off and the nightly glow draw hundreds of people every year.
During lift off, the official Spirit of Boise balloon rises into the sky first, followed by all different types of balloons from the classic raindrop shaped balloon to Star Wars themed Yoda head.
“I like how they bud up to one another on the ground and when watch how the balloons float into the sky. You don’t get to see the balloons float in the sky very often, so watching them lift off is such a novelty and special experience,” said Molly Moyer sophomore psychology major while watching Friday’s annual lift off.
The nightly glow event on Friday night consists of the air balloons lighting up for a few seconds at a time in Ann Morrison, similar to a firefly.
“Even if you have a gorgeous picture, you don’t get the same emotion being here surrounded by all these people, music, and getting to see in in person for the first time,” said Emily Verhan, sophomore kinesiology major. “I’ve always wanted to ride in a balloon-I think it would be very majestic.”
A family friendly event, the Spirit of Boise has continued to inspire wonder and excitement within the residents of Boise.
“I would probably ride in a hot air balloon to see how it feels and get the experience to look down from such a high place,” said Alex Lakatos sophomore computer science major.
More information on the Spirit of Boise and next year’s festival can be found on the official website, spiritofboise.com.