Annual Balloon Festival

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

 

Contents

1.      What time does the Flying Circus open during the Balloon Festival??. 2

2.     What do I need to be there so early in the morning?. 2

3.     Will the Hot Air Balloons be launching/flying all day?. 2

4.     What times will the Hot Air Balloons launch?. 2

5.     How do I purchase a Hot Air Balloon ride?. 2

6.     How much does a Hot Air Balloon ride usually cost?. 2

7.     Are credit cards or checks accepted for Hot Air Balloon rides?. 2

8.     Will you offer Tethered Hot Air Balloon rides?. 2

9.     Can I purchase Hot Air Balloon rides in advance?. 3

10.        Do you have contact information for any of the Hot Air Balloon pilots that are selling rides?  3

11.         How do I find out if the Balloon launches or the airshow has been canceled?  3

12.        How far in advance do you let people know that the Balloon launches or airshow has been canceled?. 3

13.        When do you start/end the airplane rides?. 3

14.        Can I reserve an airplane ride in advance?. 4

15.        Can I choose the airplane I want to ride in?. 4

16.        Can we bring in our own food and drinks, or can we purchase food and drinks on site??  4

17.        Is there any place to sit and eat in the shade?. 4

18.        Are pets allowed?. 4

19.        What if I have a gift certificate for and airplane ride?. 5

20.       Are there public restrooms available?. 5

21.        Is the airshow accessible to persons in a wheelchair, or that require assistance walking?  5

 

 

 

1.  What time does the Flying Circus open during the Balloon Festival??

Our gates open at 06:00 on both Saturday and Sunday.  It is best to arrive well before 07:00 as the line to get in will often back up with late arriving guests.

2.  What do I need to be there so early in the morning?

Balloons will be launching around 0730, if you don’t arrive early, you may miss the inflations and launches.

3.  Will the Hot Air Balloons be launching/flying all day?

No.  Hot Air Balloons can only be operated when the winds are calm and the temperature is not too high. This is usually only early in the morning, and later in the evening.  

4.  What times will the Hot Air Balloons launch?

Hot Air Balloon inflations will start around 07:00, and the balloons will launch shortly thereafter. In the late afternoon (after 6:00 PM) inflations/launches will resume as soon as the temperatures and wind allow.

5.  How do I purchase a Hot Air Balloon ride?

The Flying Circus does not sell Hot Air Balloon Rides. They must be purchased directly from the Balloon Pilots. Pilots selling rides in advance will be listed on our website as their info becomes available.

6.  How much does a Hot Air Balloon ride usually cost?

Prices vary, but the price range is usually around $150-$250 per person.

7.  Are credit cards or checks accepted for Hot Air Balloon rides?

Most balloon pilots will take major credit cards, some may also accept checks – but you will have to ask the individual pilot.

8.  Will you offer Tethered Hot Air Balloon rides?

Weather and winds permitting; we usually have at least one Tethered Hot Air Balloon, these only rise to about 50 feet. Rides are usually around $5/child-$10/adult. These rides are cash only.

9.  Can I purchase Hot Air Balloon rides in advance?

Only if you contact the Balloon Pilots in advance. See question 5.

10.            Do you have contact information for any of the Hot Air Balloon pilots that are selling rides?

We are working with the Balloon Pilots to get contact information. The contact information will be posted on the Balloon Festival page (http://www.flyingcircusairshow.com/balloon.html) as soon as it is available. You can also check our Balloon Festival Event on our Facebook pages: https://www.facebook.com/events/632160853930465/?ti=icl

and

https://www.facebook.com/events/647345582448691/?ti=icl

11.            How do I find out if the Balloon launches or the airshow has been canceled?

For known weather events (e.g. predicted rain, wind, low clouds) - A cancellation notice will be posted on the Flying Circus Airshow home page and on social media. Additionally, the voice mail on our phone (540-439-8661) is updated with a cancellation notice.

12.            How far in advance do you let people know that the Balloon launches or airshow has been canceled?

We try to let everyone know as soon as possible on the day of the show (or sooner if the weather is predicted to be an issue). However, weather predictions are not always reliable, and the weather in parts of DC, MD, or VA, may be quite different then what we see in Bealeton.  Please check our website and social media frequently if you have any concerns.

13.            When do you start/end the airplane rides?

We will be offering airplane rides starting around 07:00AM, and will be offering them throughout the day until about 12:30PM. After the airshow (~3:45) we will resume the ride operation until all rides are finished, or until it gets too late to continue flying.

14.            Can I reserve an airplane ride in advance?

All our airplane rides are on a first-come, first-served basis. All our ride tickets are numbered, and they are called out in that order.  Purchase early in the day to expedite your ride.

15.            Can I choose the airplane I want to ride in?

Our pilots take turns to distribute the rides evenly. We will try to accommodate special requests, but we may have to send other riders up ahead of you until your preferred pilot/airplane comes up in the rotation.  Additionally, if you are requesting a particular aircraft for a standard ride, and the aircraft is primarily used for aerobatic rides, or double (two passenger) rides, you may have to wait until all those specialty rides are finished before we could put you in the airplane for a standard ride.  This waiting process could take hours on balloon festival, so please keep this in mind before requesting a specific pilot or aircraft.

16.            Can we bring in our own food and drinks, or can we purchase food and drinks on site??

Yes, outside food and beverages are permitted. We also have a snack bar that offers good food at reasonable prices.  We have Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, Nachos, Pepsi products, Ice Cream, etc. For this event we will also have some additional food vendors on site.

 

17. Is there any place to sit and eat in the shade?

We have a large shaded picnic area with picnic tables available for use on a first-come basis.  We also have a large pavilion that can be rented for the day ($500).  If not rented, it is also available on a first-come basis.

18.            Are pets allowed?

Yes they are --- But there are a few restrictions --- And a cautionary note:

·         Pets must be kept on a leash at all times.  Pets “off leash” are a danger to our aircraft and crew if they are loose near the planes

·         Pet owners are responsible for cleaning up after their pets

·         Pet owners are responsible for ensuring that their pets do not become a nuisance to our other customers.

Please note that our pyrotechnics, aircraft and even the Hot Air Balloon (burners) are sometimes quite loud, so please keep this in mind if your pet does not react well to sudden loud noises.

19.            What if I have a gift certificate for and airplane ride?

Gift certificates are redeemed at the gift shop, and you will be issued a ride ticket in order as described in question 14.

20.            Are there public restrooms available?

Yes, we have public restrooms.  Our restrooms are clean, spacious, and handicap accessible. As we are expecting a large crowd, we will also have additional port-a-johns available.

21.            Is the airshow accessible to persons in a wheelchair, or that require assistance walking?

There is handicapped parking in the area immediately behind the audience seating area.  Depending on the row you wish to sit in, it is only 10-50 feet from the car to a bench.  You are also welcome to bring your own lawn chairs and sit in the same area.  The area is grass covered, but it is mowed & quite level.  This area is also adjacent to the restrooms.