Enshrinement Festival Airborne: Annual Hot Air Balloon Classic

“Tic Toc” is one of five specialty-shaped balloons in the Balloon Classic (Courtesy Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival)

JACKSON TWP., Ohio (News Talk 1480 WHBC) — It’s a high-flying weekend at the Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival Balloon Classic.

50 balloons from as far away as Arizona are part of the activities at Stark State and Kent State Stark.

The Friday morning launch was swept away.

Winds aloft were likely to carry balloonists into unfamiliar and tricky territory over downtown Guangzhou and areas south of Guangzhou.

Launches are now scheduled for 6:30 a.m. Friday evening, weather permitting.

6:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Saturday, and again Sunday morning at 6:30 a.m.

Learn more about the Enshrinement festival:

Weekend hot air balloon activities:

Select drivers will compete in a team format for an $18,000 cash prize, plus a $3,000 “up for grabs” perch sponsored by Maury Sullivan and Pancho’s Southwestern Grill and Todd Hawke, GDK & Co.

Spectators can marvel at the “Night Glow” on Fridays at 9:30 p.m. when pilots light up their balloon envelopes while tethered to the launch field.

The Balloon Education Zone, sponsored by FreshMark, will provide a special opportunity for adults and children to step into a fully inflated balloon envelope and learn about the envelope, the balloon basket and the burners.

Guests can watch Kenan Advantage Group-sponsored skydivers each evening before the balloon launch.

Residents of Stark County can participate in the ballooning excitement by allowing a balloon to land on their property. To signal pilots to land, place a white sheet in a 200′ x 200′ grassy area. The landing area should be free of trees and power lines, and allow enough space for the ball to land. The pilot projects offer landowners the chance to earn $50 in land use appreciation.

Good food and entertainment are also on the menu on Friday and Saturday nights. There will be a variety of food vendors, an inflatable play area for the kids, live music and of course fireworks.

Friday night entertainment schedule:
Dance Fever – 6:30 p.m.
Donut Eating Contest (sponsored by Mary Ann Donuts) – 8:00 p.m.
New Wave Nation – 8:30 p.m.
NIGHT LIGHT – 9:30 p.m.

Schedule of Saturday evening entertainment:
Chris Kraft – 6:30 p.m.
Dustin Kines – 8:30 p.m.
FIREWORKS – 10:00 p.m.