I went to the Great Reno Balloon race this year. This is what I experienced. To start off this was my first time actually experiencing it at the park. Most years I have just skipped it. It is really early for me. In 2019 me and my now fiancee went to watch it on a hill. They didn’t end up doing it that day because the wind was too strong. In 2020 it was canceled because everything was canceled in 2020. In 2021 we skipped it. In 2022 we made the effort to go.
The balloon races start really early in the morning. Like at 5am early. I didn’t sleep that night. I knew if I went to sleep after 10pm I wasn’t going to get up at 4am. So I just stayed up. Some of my family on my mom’s side was staying with us that weekend. My gram, aunt, uncle, and their eight kids left around 2am to beat traffic. Me and my fiancee decided originally to go on Sunday. When we found out that our family was going on Saturday we decided to go with them.
Around 4am I woke my fiancee up and we went to the park. The park is a 20-minute walk from our house. She decided she didn’t want to walk that early so we took her car. Where we ended up parking thanks to the amount of traffic only saved us five to ten minutes of walking time. Once we got to the park all we had to do is find our family and sit down. We waited a few minutes and then the show started.
They started with a show where they lit up the dark night sky. That show lasted an hour or so. There were multiple hot air balloons in groups throughout the park. The last performance of the show was eight hot air balloons taking off in the dark. By the time they were ready to land the sun had started to come out. Around 6:30am all of the remaining hot air balloons started to inflate. When they inflated they took off.
There were multiple different balloons. Everything from Loony Tunes characters to Darth Vader. Most of them didn’t have a theme. Most of them were just colorful. It was fun. I will probably do it again next year. It is a good family event. I really enjoy events like this were I get to spend time with my fiancee. The only thing that I didn’t like was the insane amount of people. At the park alone it looked like fifty thousand people were there. That doesn’t even include the thousands of people who watched it from the hillside. I didn’t bring a tripod for my camera. Next time I will so my hand doesn’t get in the way.