Officials deem this year’s Balloon Fiesta a success | KOB 4

Officials deem this year’s Balloon Fiesta a success

Ryan Laughlin
October 14, 2019 09:18 AM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- Lots of hard work goes into pulling off an event as large as the Balloon Fiesta.

Balloon Fiesta Board of Directors President Ty Young said he knows all too well about the amount of work involved.

“I’m beat up. Mentally, physically, I’m tired out, but that’s part of the game,” Young said.

Young is responsible for making sure the 9-day event goes smoothly. The priority this year was to correct mistakes made with the park and ride system that happened last year.

“There was probably 19,000 that had a fine time,” Young said. “There was 2,000 that did not have a fine time. Either they didn’t get to the field, or they go to the field after Mass Ascension and that’s totally unacceptable.”

This year, officials staggered park and ride check-in times, added city buses and consulted traffic experts.

In addition to the transportation changes, extra security measures were also implemented. This was the first year where visitors had to go through metal detectors.

Young said people had to wait an average of five to eight minutes to get through the security line.

Although weather forced the cancellation of two events, and a handful of balloons had some hard landings, officials agree that this year’s Fiesta was better than last years.

“Our performance and how we took care of the public, definitely an ‘A’. There’s always room for improvement,” Young said.

Attendance numbers for the event have not been released yet however, in the past years the Balloon Fiesta has generated more than $270 million.


Ryan Laughlin

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