Agua Caliente Casinos Hot Air Balloon Festival Kick Off

Tiani Jadulang

This morning Agua Caliente Casinos kicked off their annual Cathedral City Hot Air Balloon Festival and Food Truck Fiesta.

Ryan Hunt, the Communications and Events Manager with the City of Cathedral City, says there will be a drone light show tonight at 6pm., which will then lead to Continuous Signal… a Pink Floyd tribute band.

“Thirty balloons will be here and then they’re going to start to take off. It’s going to be a really beautiful scene. They’re going to fly East and then we get into what’s happening in Downtown Cathedral City the rest of the weekend.” says Hunt.

You can take a ride in one of these unique hot air balloons tonight and tomorrow, the festival ends with a pancake breakfast Sunday morning at Big League Dreams.

“It’s one of the best hot air balloon events in the country. We were recognized by US News as one of the top balloon festivals in the world. So I’m really excited to see it all in action this morning.” Hunt emphasizes on the festival.

Pearl Aguinaldo, the Senior Director of Marketing Communications and Advertising says this weekend is about giving back to the community.

“Agua Caliente Casinos just love to support any event that is a legacy such as this and that is really there for the community to take part in and to make memories and be part of those memories within the community.” 

“This whole thing is real simple hot air rises in a bag. The size of the bag means what you can lift.” says hot air balloon pilot, Steve Wilkinson. 

The fun doesn’t stop there, the pilots play a game called hare and hounds… where the first hot air balloon to land marks an “X” on the ground.  The following hot air balloons try to drop a marker as close to the target as they can.

Winners will be chosen day-by-day but the final results will be released Sunday morning, with both trophies and cash prizes for the top performances.

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