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Location: Albuquerque, NM

Balloons, balloons and more balloons!

If this world premiere event is on your bucket list, then join the Escapees RV Club HOP for the annual Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.

This fiesta is the only Balloon Fiesta in the world, where the “box effect” comes into play. The “box effect” is a unique wind pattern that helps pilots navigate their balloons in a vertical, rectangular path; allowing them to return to the launch field, or even landing next to your RV.

Each morning, as dawn breaks over the Sandia Mountains, the skies will fill with 600 bright, beautiful hot-air balloons and 700 pilots from all around the globe.

From its humble beginnings, in 1972, the Balloon Fiesta has grown into the largest balloon festival in the world, with its 365-acre Balloon Fiesta Park and a launch field the size of 54 football fields (78 acres). It is also the most photographed hot-air balloon festival in the world, with a whopping 886,414 attendees in 2021.

This fiesta also hosts the America’s Challenge Gas Balloon Race, with the winner being the one that has traveled the farthest. Gas balloons in the past have gone as far as the East Coast and across Canada, and you can track their progress in this race on the official Fiesta website.

Balloon Fiesta HOP 2023<br>Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta 1

The Dawn Patrol lifts off in the dark, with specially fitted lights, to observe weather conditions at different altitudes, such as the wind speed and its direction. Upon approval, the balloons lift off in a mass ascension. The “Zebras,” always wearing black and white, are the ones who coordinate the launching of the balloons.

One of the most exciting events is the Flight of the Nations Mass Ascension, where balloonists wave their national flag during the launch.
Even though there are always traditionally shaped balloons, there will be various specialty shapes, too, and some of the most popular are the cow, sun, pig, stagecoach, clock, skunk, the Ladybug and the sweetest mother, daddy and baby bumblebees. The bumblebee’s hands have Velcro, so when they touch in midair, it appears they are holding hands or kissing.

Balloon Fiesta HOP 2023<br>Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta 2
Photo courtesy of Larry & Robyn Schultz
Balloon Fiesta HOP 2023<br>Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta 3
Photo courtesy of Larry & Robyn Schultz

When visiting any of the balloon pilots, remember to ask them for one of the trading cards, which will explain all the pertinent information about their balloon.

At dusk, you can see the Twilight Glow on the launch field. This is when the burners are ignited, filling the balloons with a bouquet of bright colors. Then, the nights will finish with an extraordinary display of fireworks.
Escapees will have Boondocking, “rally style” parking and a private tent for inclement weather, socials and catered meals.

Balloon Fiesta HOP 2023<br>Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta 4

There will be a considerable amount of walking, so please bring comfortable walking shoes, as well as binoculars and a camera to capture those once-in-a-lifetime special moments.

Registration includes:

See the chart below for all that is included with this HOP.

Rain or shine.  Itinerary is subject to change without notice.

 This HOP includes a considerable amount of walking, please wear comfortable walking shoes. 

Some tours are not wheelchair accessible.

 *Special dietary requests cannot be accommodated.

*Note This itinerary may still be amended. We do our best to secure all activities ahead of time, but when dealing with the weather, traffic, length of tours, and our local vendors’ changes are sometimes necessary.

Payment Options

Early arrival dates are:

When registering for this HOP, you may pay half upon registration.

Final payment is due on August 4, 2023.

There are two ways to register and pay: online or by phone.

• To register online (recommended), click the button below and follow the instructions on your screen.
• To register by phone, call Escapees HOP Registration at (936) 329-6499.

Note: the HOP may sell out online before you have a chance to register via phone.

Calendar of Activities

Friday, Oct 6

  • Arrival
  • Balloon Pilot presentation
  • Announcements and meet and greet
  • **Catered welcome dinner

Saturday, Oct. 7

  • *Catered breakfast*
  • Dawn Patrol Show
  • Morning Glow
  • Opening Ceremonies
  • Mass Ascension
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational – Professional Carvers
  • Announcements and social
  • America’s Challenge Gas Balloon Race Inflation
  • *Catered dinner*
  • America’s Challenge Gas Balloon Launch
  • Twilight Twinkle Glow™
  • America’s Challenge Gas Balloon Launch
  • AfterGlow™ Fireworks Show

Sunday, Oct. 8

  • **Catered breakfast
  • Dawn Patrol Show
  • Morning Glow
  • Mass Ascension
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational – Professional Carvers
  • Fiesta of Wheels Car Show – on Launch Field – Free
  • Balloon Fiesta Pin Trading (Group Tour Tent – North End of Main Street)
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational
  • Announcements and social
  • **Catered dinner
  • Balloon Glow
  • AfterGlow™ Fireworks Show

Monday, Oct. 9

  • *Catered breakfast*
  • Dawn Patrol Show
  • Balloons Launch
  • Balloon Competition Flying Begins
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Demonstrations

Tuesday, Oct. 10

  • *Catered breakfast*
  • Dawn Patrol Show
  • Balloons Launch
  • Balloon Competition Flying Begins
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Demonstrations

Wednesday, Oct. 11

  • *Catered breakfast*
  • Dawn Patrol Show
  • Morning Glow
  • Flight of the Nations Mass Ascension
  • Balloon Competition Flying Begins
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Demonstrations

Thursday, Oct. 12

  • **Catered breakfast
  • Dawn Patrol Show
  • Special Shape Rodeo
  • Balloon Competition Flying Begins
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational – Professional Carvers
  • Announcements and social
  • **Catered dinner
  • Special Shape Glowdeo
  • Laser Light Show
  • AfterGlow Fireworks Show

Friday, Oct. 13

  • **Catered breakfast
  • Dawn Patrol Show
  • Special Shape Rodeo
  • Competition Flying Begins
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational – Professional Carvers
  • Announcements and social
  • **Catered dinner
  • Special Shape Glowdeo
  • AfterGlow Fireworks Show

Saturday, Oct. 14

  • **Catered breakfast
  • Dawn Patrol
  • Morning Glow
  • Mass Ascension
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational – Professional Carvers
  • Balloon Fiesta Pin Trading (Group Tour Tent north end of Main Street)
  • Music Fiesta (Extra charge by Fiesta)
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Invitational – Professional Carvers
  • Announcements social
  • **Farewell Catered dinner
  • Night Magic Glow
  • AfterGlow Fireworks Show

Sunday, Oct. 15

  • **Catered breakfast
  • Dawn Patrol Show
  • Morning Glow
  • Farewell Mass Ascension
  • AIBF Chainsaw Carving Q&A
  • End of HOP – Safe travels!

Package also includes:

  • 1 Pump out
  • 1 Water fill
  • 4 Launch Field entry tickets per person
  • Souvenir HOP name badges
  • Your HOP hosts
  • All gratuities
    …AND much more!

After registering – confirmation email

Once registered, a receipt notification will be sent via email regarding all the pertinent information, such as name of the RV park, address, tour dates, times, etc.

If you do not receive it, please check your spam files, or email us at: registration@escapees.com

Cancellation Policy

 All cancellations must be in writing.

Cancellations 60+ days prior to the event: 

You may cancel your registration for a full refund minus a 10% fee of the entire cost of the HOP any time before 11:59pm CDT on 08/04/2023. Cancellation requests must be submitted in writing to registration@escapees.com

Cancellations 59-30 days prior to the event: 

You may cancel your registration for a 50% refund of the entire cost of the HOP before 11:59pm CDT on 09/03/2023. Cancellation requests must be submitted in writing to registration@escapees.com

No refunds will be given for cancellations after 11:59pm CST on 09/04/2023. 

All ticket sales on and after 09/04/2023 are final.

Travel Insurance

We highly suggest you protect your investment on this HOP by purchasing trip insurance. 

If you or a family member has a pre-existing medical condition, consider purchasing trip cancellation or interruption insurance. Insurance can also help with covering unexpected illnesses or emergencies while on the trip.

To learn more about or purchase Travel insurance, click the banner below.

More Information

To view upcoming HOPs

HOP Facebook page:

To join our discussion forum

Escapees Club News:  The HOPs or any Escapees RV Club information can be sent to you via Club News.

Stay informed with important club updates, advocacy issues and promotion items. If you want to stay updated, go to the right-hand side of this page and click on, Sign up for Club News

By registering for this event, you are agreeing to the following:

  • As an attendee, you assume all risk and danger relating to your personal property, RV, and attendance at the event, whether occurring prior to, during, or after the event. In the event of loss or theft, no claim will be made upon Escapees, its volunteers, employees or agents.
  • Volunteers may be directing and assisting you in your parking areas. However, it is the driver of the vehicle who is ultimately responsible for avoiding obstacles or dangerous situations and is solely responsible for any damage to one’s property or the property of others.
  • As an attendee at this event, you are granting your permission to be filmed, videotaped, audiotaped or photographed, and granting Escapees RV Club the full use of any such recordings or images without compensation.
  • By registering, you will also receive occasional email notifications of future HOPs; however, you can opt-out of these notifications at any time.
  • In addition to the above, during registration, you will be required to agree that you will help provide a safe environment for everyone by complying with our health and safety rules, and will release Escapees from liability should you become ill during the event.
  • By purchasing a ticket for this event, you are agreeing to all the above, including the Escapees Covid Policy. For more details on this policy, click Escapees RV Club Covid Policy.

Wait List

See you at the HOP!

Lisa Koca 
HOP Director

escapees.com/hops

936-329-6499
Escapees RV Club

100 Rainbow Drive

Livingston, Texas 77351

escapees.com

EVENT DATE

October 6 - October 15

Organizer

Lisa Koca

Categories:

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiest

4401 Alameda Blvd NE
Albuquerque, NM 87113 United States

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