Free activities

Provo Balloon Fest

(Last Updated On: July 2, 2021)

Every year as part of the Freedom Festival in Provo, there is a balloon festival. The Provo Balloon Fest usually happens for three mornings in a row (July 2, 3, & 5, 2021) so you have a good chance of catching this adventure. It’s an early morning adventure, so make sure to prepare yourselves for an early alarm.

The sunrise was beautiful behind the balloons.
The sunrise was beautiful behind the balloons.

The balloons are supposed to start filling up and launch around 6:30 am. We heard you should be there a little early so you can see them get all set up. So we arrived at 6:10 am. Unfortunately for us, it was slightly windy so everyone was waiting to see if the weather would clear. A few minutes after we arrived, they sent up some “tester” balloons (I can’t remember the official name) and the pilots all watched what they did. Then they all headed back to their balloons, but they continued to wait. The only reason I am telling you this is because I want you to be prepared in case of bad weather. Hot air balloons can only fly in pretty nice conditions since they can’t steer.

Provo Balloon Fest
The sky was beautiful. There were lots of people getting ready to launch balloons.
Hot Air Balloon laying on ground to be blown up.
There were baskets, fans, and envelopes (what I would have called the balloon) laying on the ground all over the field.
Inside the basket of a hot air balloon
They use that fan to fill the balloon and that gas tank to blow hot gas into the balloon.

Finally around 6:50 the Bank of American Fork balloons got brave and started filling up their balloons. It was so exiting! Everyone hurried over to watch. It was fascinating to see this massive balloon fill up using large fans. Then once it was mostly full, they turn on the fire!! This is loud and so if you have children who don’t like loud noises, be prepared. Our two year old usually does fine with all adventures, but he was terrified of the fire…not the noise, but seeing the fire.

hot air balloons filling up.
We were so excited when the balloons started to fill up.
Provo Balloon Fest
You can see right into the balloon as they fill it up with air.
IMG_1985
It was fun to watch!
Provo Balloon Fest
Getting ready to stand up!
Hot Air Balloon filling up
Almost there….
Provo baloon fest
Bank of American Fork balloons were the first up!

Soon lots of balloons started to fill up and everything was looking ready to roll, but unfortunately it didn’t last long. A big wind blew through and balloons started tipping and swaying. So most crews stopped filling their balloons and many that were filled up, brought them down. Only 4 balloons ended up launching and there were two others that filled up, but never flew.

Honestly, it didn’t matter to us, or our children. We had so much fun watching the balloons. The best part is that you are so close. You can walk right up the balloons, look in their baskets, and talk to the pilots. You can watch them blow up and lift off from just a few feet away. Our boys said that we have to come back every year, even after only one balloon had lifted off. They were obviously having fun (other than our terrified two year old).

IMG_1997
Smokey the bear filled up, but never flew.
IMG_2004
Alexander Printing sent their balloon up first.
IMG_2003
We thought all the balloons were going to fly, but it didn’t work out that way.
pig shaped hot air balloon
We loved the piggy bank!
IMG_2011
This balloon went right over us!
IMG_2020
It’s neat to see them flying by our beautiful Utah mountains.

I was hoping for the amazing lift off of like 20 balloons, but even though that never happened, it was still a great adventure. We will definitely be going back to check it out another year.

The Provo Balloon Fest occurs at Bulldog Field which is directly east of the Utah Valley Regional Medical Center. We parked on the east side of the hospital and walked to the park. The address is 1100 N Freedom Blvd. Here is the link for the Provo Balloon Fest. Another fun 4th of July adventure is the Pleasant Grove Flag that hangs over Grove Creek Canyon. It’s the largest American Flag flown. It’s also Free, so check it out. More details here.

IMG_2029
Make sure to get there early, or right on time, so you can watch them fill up. It was so fun!
IMG_2026
This balloon never flew, but it was one of our favorites.

Leave a Comment

1 Comment

  • We love the balloon festival, in fact the those are my nephews in the picture with two boys by the balloon with the star and the fan blowing it up. I would love a copy of the picture if that is ok with you? Sorry if they walked right into your shot 🙂