We are getting ready for balloon rally season. Here in San Diego, ballooning is a year round activity but many places are limited by weather. For us summertime is time to get out of town, away from the coastal marine layers, inland high temperatures and tourists escaping the even higher temperatures of Arizona and enjoy small town balloon rallies.
The first stop this year, and for the past few years, is Panguitch, Utah and the Panguitch Valley Balloon Rally. Panguitch which means “big fish” in Paiute Indian, is a small town, 1.4 square miles in area, on highway 89, 25 miles NW of Bryce Canyon National Park and has a population of 1600. Even though it is such a small town they put on a great balloon rally every year.
There will be flights every morning, weather permitting, June 22-24 this year. Saturday night is the town’s biggest event, the balloon glow down Main and Center Streets. The crowds are huge and most of the businesses stay open late to take advantage of it.
It is a unique little town where you are never quite sure what you are going to see.