Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Ballunar Blast in Houston!


Fried ice cream, anyone? It's that time of year again in Houston! Mark your calendars in advance, because the celebration is a bit earlier this fall: September 28th, 29th and 30th will be busy busy busy with the 19th annual Ballunar Liftoff, presented by the City of Nassau Bay and Space Center Houston! Rain or shine.

Admission will be $10 per vehicle into Johnson Space Center, where NASA is holding an "Open House" on Saturday. Astronauts will be signing autographs! Who's joining us?

Ballunar Festival and NASA Open House
The amazing schedule of events for the 3-day weekend includes team skydiving exhibitions, evening "balloon glows," arts & crafts exhibits, Sonny the Bird Man, the Texas Snake Man, the usual presence from local restaurants to round out diverse concessions and tons of live music, including The Infinite Groove!

Of course, the hot air balloon competitions are the major highlight, and I love the names the participating balloon teams come up with! This year, we'll be seeing SuperChicken (seriously), Air Apparent (clever!), Beemster Betty Bovine, Rainboze Too, Spa Force One, Wind Rose, Leaves of Grass, Texas Magic, Texas Twist, Racer Tex, and many (many, many!) more.

Ballunar Festival and NASA Open House
Novelties to keep the kids busy will be Disney shows and local dancers, Lockheed's Shuttle Rendezvous, Air Sports Excellent Adventures, and many opportunities to catch local live musical acts. Just like Space Week, the Experience NASA zone with the Driven to Explore exhibit will be on hand, as well as the Kids Space Place and numerous NASA programs in the Teague Auditorium.

New additions to the festivities this year will be the exotic bird and snake shows, and the Preludes Dancers from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts!

Ballunar Liftoff Festival, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. Its mission is to help the public learn about aviation and space exploration, and to sponsor and fund educational activities that encourage young people to learn about aviation and space and to study mathematics and the sciences.