Balloon Fiesta will require masks, cancel some events amid virus surge

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The International Balloon Fiesta on Wednesday announced they will require masks for all guests in all indoor areas and in crowded outdoor settings

"One of the things we like to set a benchmark on is making sure we’re following public health orders as well as CDC guidelines. Right now, both of those are silent with respect to that particular item,” said Tom Garrity, spokesperson with the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.

The Music Fiesta and the Balloon Discovery Center will each be cancelled for this year’s festivities. The Music Fiesta is being cancelled due to the close proximity of guests while the Center is cancelled because of its indoor nature featuring activities with multiple touchpoints.

Among other changes are:

  • Providing cashless options to purchase tickets

  • Requiring concessions stands to have plastic shielding and cashless options

  • Moving hospitality seating from indoor and tent areas to outdoor seating

  • Increased spacing, including for popular special shape balloons around the park

  • Increased number of hand sanitizer and hand washing stations, including hand sanitizer in all restrooms inside the facility

The guidelines are based on CDC recommendations and the current public health order issued by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.

"We just want to make sure that we have as many ways as possible to make sure that all of our guests and pilots have a very enjoyable experience where we can just enjoy the outdoors,” said Garrity.