Duluth Rising Festival

Hot air balloons are returning to Bayfront Festival Park. Hot air balloons are returning to Bayfront Festival Park. |  Photo: WDIO TowerCam

Created: September 14, 2018 09:02 AM

Hot air balloons are returning to Bayfront Festival Park this weekend for the 5th annual Duluth Rising Festival, also known as “Le Festival des Montgolfières à Duluth.” The annual event is hosted by Kern and Kompany. Up to 8 hot air balloons will inflate weather-permitting. 

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Organizers say there are specific weather conditions needed to allow for flight.

Weather Regulations

  • Clouds must be a minimum of 2,000’ from ground to the bottom layer of clouds, and at least 3 miles of visibility.
  • Winds at Bayfront must be under 9 miles per hour, and wind speeds 250’ above ground must be under 13 miles per hour.
  • Winds direction must be off the lake and blowing in a 340 degree to 180-degree direction towards Duluth/Hermantown/Proctor.
  • Cannot inflate, offer rides or launch in rain.

The hot air balloons will not be inflated throughout the festival but during specific timeframes. See below.

The event includes all things risings. The public is invited to the free event, to walk around the balloons and learn about the art of hot air ballooning. If the weather permits, free tethered rides up to 30 feet in the air will be offered on a first come first serve basis.

The Kiwanis Club of Duluth will hold their free Family Kite Fly during the festival. Receive a free kite to fly in the park from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Stop by the many vendor booths and enjoy a sampling of a variety of local craft brews.

Join area middle schoolers while they prepared and launch their weather balloons as part of a unique school project made possible through a grant from St. Louis County. Organizers say schools from around the area will be launching weather balloons complete with GPS Tracking, Go Pro Camera Systems, and highly sensitive weather measuring equipment that will reach an altitude of over 100,000 feet. Crews will track the balloons and retrieve the equipment to review the data collected during the flight.

There is so much to see and it’s all free! Read below for details on all of the activities and events at the 2018 Duluth Rising Festival!

Friday, September 14 
4:00 p.m.     Craft Brew Village Opens
5:15 p.m.     Balloon Launch Window #1 Opens (wind speed & wind direction contingent)
5:30 p.m.     Tethered Balloon Ride Window #1 Open (wind speed contingent)
6:00 p.m.     Live Music Starts
7:30 p.m.     Balloon Glow Event (wind speed contingent)
9:00 p.m.     Event Close

Saturday, September 15
6:45 a.m.     Balloon Launch Window #2 Opens (wind speed & wind direction contingent)
7:00 a.m.      Tethered Balloon Ride Window #2 Open (wind speed contingent)
9:00 a.m.      Balloon Launch/Ride Window #2 Closes
11:00 a.m.    Kiwanis Club of Friendly Duluth Free Family Kite Fly
12:00 p.m.    Craft Brew Village Open
12:05 p.m.    Middle School Weather Balloon Launch, Presented by St. Louis County
5:00 p.m.     RISING STARS, Presented by Carlson Orthodontics featuring Peyton List from the Disney Channel.  (In the event in inclement weather this will be moved to the DECC Symphony Hall). 
5:45 p.m.      Balloon Launch Window #3 Opens (wind speed & wind direction contingent)
5:30 p.m.      Tethered Balloon Ride Window #3 Open (wind speed contingent)
7:30 p.m.      Balloon Launch/Ride Window #3 Closes
9:00 p.m.      Event Close

There will be LIVE updates throughout the weekend via our @duluthrising and @kernkompany facebook pages on pending launch updates.  

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