Advertisement

Zebras at Fiesta ensure balloon pilots take off safely

Erica Zucco
October 07, 2017 06:51 AM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- At its peak, all 78 acres at Balloon Fiesta Park are filled with hundreds of colorful balloons and visitors, the smell of propane and those all-important zebras roaming the field.

Advertisement

Twenty-five years ago, Bill Brennan first became a launch director. Now he's the chief. He and many other volunteers put in hours of work at the Balloon Fiesta, not for money but just because they love this event so much.

"I love the smell, the feel, the mornings, the coolness, the crispness of the morning," he said. "When you hear the inflator fan kick in and then those gentle giants start taking shape, then you just start getting goosebumps."

The zebras work all year long to get ready for Fiesta. They go through hours and hours of training and ultimately decide when and where the balloons go.

"What it boils down to is that our launch directors are facilitators for our pilots to get into the air safely," Brennan said. "They'll talk with the pilot, talk about overhead traffic, talk about if there are balloons coming from the other part of the field, look at which way the winds are going, who the nearest neighbor is. Just explaining what's going to happen."

Credits

Erica Zucco

Copyright 2017 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

Advertisement


Relay Media Amp

Advertisement


Halloween Costume Photo Contest


Advertisement




Like Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on LinkedIn Follow Us on Google+ RSS Email Newsletters Android Apps iOS Apps



Nearly a year later, unorthodox traffic light still a headache for many

Family of Saturday crash victims say man is brain dead

Passenger dead, driver arrested after early-morning, single-car crash

Details revealed about suspect in Friday's carjacking-turned-crash

2017 Duke City Marathon sees near-record attendance