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National Balloon Classic

I think there's something so magical 00:28 about hot-air balloons 00:29 I mean his kids he didn't love a balloon 00:31 who didn't love a balloon and let it go 00:34 and wonder where it was going to float 00:36 away to who cannot look up and not smile 00:40 when you see something that beautiful 00:41 floating in the air there is nothing 00:46 like seeing somebody see a hot-air 00:48 balloon for the first time I mean just 00:50 for me I've seen them since I was a 00:52 little girl I've been in this town and 00:53 they never get old but to watch somebody 00:55 see a hot-air balloon for the first time 00:57 is pretty pretty remarkable 01:07 the balloon classic is a gluon 01:09 competition is basically an air show 01:11 that's made up of only balloons Indian 01:13 oil is a small town there's like 14,000 01:15 people here so in order for this event 01:17 to happen that requires tons and tons of 01:20 volunteers doing everything it's 01:22 unimaginable how much they do here 01:24 the pilots here range from 35 hours of 01:27 flight time to thousands of hours of 01:29 flight time line of balloons I planned a 01:33 musical instrument you have the guys who 01:35 can play chopsticks and the other guys 01:37 who can play Mozart it takes years and 01:39 years to develop the touch you have to 01:41 outsmart the other people to win it's 01:43 like playing chess in the sky you have 01:45 to look and think and anticipate your 01:47 next move and let the person next use 01:49 next move is also and you also want to 01:51 be able to out move him so if you both 01:54 end up at the target at the same time 01:55 you're in the lower spot so you can get 01:57 thriller from five feet he has to draw 01:59 from above you money doesn't make you 02:01 win smarts making you outdo that smart 02:04 the guy and then in a car racing he with 02:06 the most money wins but in balloon 02:08 racing he who outsmarts the other guy 02:10 wins it's so still sometimes you can 02:12 actually hear their conversation 02:15 it's me have to tell keep clean if they 02:17 don't hit the target this is a 02:18 family-friendly event we are host to 02:21 anywhere from fifty to ninety thousand 02:23 guests and it just goes to show that 02:25 people are very excited about this event 02:27 it's the Midwest so it's worth the drive 02:30 and people come here and there's just a 02:33 sense of hospitality and you know we're 02:36 lucky right now we're having beautiful 02:37 weather over from Des Moines Iowa came 02:40 here watch the balloons and I haven't 02:42 ever been first time we try to make this 02:44 a yearly event every family member right 02:46 here is having fun it's great for the 02:48 kids it's great for the parents it's 02:49 amazing wonderful multipl it's like a 02:54 dream come true here while there's other 03:04 balloon events all over the country and 03:07 they're fantastic events often they're 03:08 smaller events weekend events we are 03:11 actually the only event that flies both 03:13 morning and evenings so obviously we're 03:16 first and foremost a hot air balloon 03:18 event and we will always be a hot air 03:20 balloon event but we know that we have 03:22 to have other things as well if the 03:24 weather isn't perfect or if they're on a 03:25 delay because people want to be 03:26 entertained a vibe and every single 03:29 night during our festival we have kids 03:31 land activities lots of food concessions 03:35 because everybody wants to eat so we 03:37 have every you know food trucks and fan 03:39 favorites and and that sort of thing we 03:41 love to do everything in the air of 03:43 course but we're we're grounded in other 03:46 things and if you get a scope of you 03:49 know our field and that's everything we 03:50 have a 150 acres of beautiful rolling 03:52 hills out here and so we often tell 03:55 families when they say well what can we 03:56 do while we're waiting 03:57 the balloon turn the Wi-Fi off and just 03:59 enjoy we also couldn't do what we do 04:02 without amazing landowners so we have to 04:06 have a very good relationship because 04:08 obviously when you put balloons up in 04:10 the air they're going to need a place to 04:11 land you can you can take off or you can 04:13 launch from our balloon field but they 04:15 have to fly somewhere in land we started 04:19 here in 1971 they had nine balloons if 04:24 what you see today but back then the 04:27 pilots were a little more brave in 04:29 making him at the wind was three mile an 04:31 hour twenty later two or three they take 04:33 off and they his land bounce like a 04:36 basketball I mean and nobody ever got 04:39 hurt I don't know why but it was almost 04:41 fun you know back seeing that crews that 04:44 are serious about winning this event as 04:46 the pilot is once there you go out and 04:48 the crew gets the balloon launched they 04:50 pack up all the launch equipment into 04:52 the truck to chase after the pilot and 04:54 to check and make sure how he does it 04:56 each target then after he finishes the 04:58 last target they will be where he lands 05:00 to catch him pack him back up and get 05:03 him back into the fuel line in time to 05:05 get everything they need to get 05:06 learning is a strong sport it continues 05:09 to have a lot of followers it's never 05:11 going to have the followers that auto 05:13 racing or football or anything like that 05:15 will have because it just doesn't 05:16 interest as many people but the people 05:18 that are interested in it truly love 05:20 this and they make this their lifestyle 05:21 and there are families we have do we 05:23 have three generations of people flying 05:25 here that their families can find for 05:27 that long you have to be here to 05:28 experience it you can look at hot air 05:30 balloons floating in the air from just 05:32 about any location if they're there but 05:34 you have to be here to feel that whoosh 05:36 of the burner and to feel the heat of 05:38 the burner during night glows and to 05:41 hear it even though hot air ballooning 05:43 is such a visual experience it's it's 05:45 something that's felt - and you cannot 05:47 feel that unless you're here I think the 05:50 great thing about ballooning is that it 05:53 is on so many people's bucket list we 05:55 compete here and it's all about the 05:57 competition but then we also will share 05:59 the rides with with other people and 06:01 they fly along there's not enough things 06:06 in life that are unpredictable there's 06:08 not enough surprises in life and I think 06:10 this is one of them 06:24 you 06:24 [Music]

"You will touch heaven, Jonathan, in the moment that you touch perfect speed. And that isn't flying 1,000 miles an hour, or a million, or flying at the speed of light. Because any number is a limit, and perfection doesn't have limits. Perfect speed, my son, is being there." - "Jonathan Livingston Seagull" by Richard Bach, 1970. Experience 'Perfect Speed' at The National Balloon Classic, July 26-August 3, 2019 in Indianola, Iowa.

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