Great Falls Balloon Festival
August 16 - August 18, 2013
United States 04240
3rd weekend in August
Number of balloons: 30-40
Year began: 1992
The Great Falls Balloon Festival is the premier summer event of central Maine. It enjoys a national reputation as a first-class event and hosts visitors and balloonists from all over the US and Canada. We can now say this much-loved event is a destination for many visitors to the state of Maine.
Established in 1992 by a small group of business people, civic leaders and friends, the festival’s goal is to provide fundraising opportunities to local nonprofit groups while celebrating our community and promoting the Lewiston/Auburn area as a tourist destination.
Based at Railroad Park, on the banks of the Androscoggin River, the festival quickly became a huge success, attracting crowds of approximately 100,000 visitors annually. The river—with the rocky Great Falls as its backdrop—provides a picturesque setting for the dozens of balloons which visit annually, including some special shape balloons. The cooperative efforts of the cities of Lewiston and Auburn, an army of volunteers and valued local businesses have grown the festival into a truly memorable event.
The sight of dozens of hot air balloons in the skies over Lewiston/Auburn is a spectacular experience. With free admission, annual attendance above 100,000, financial impact in excess of $2,000,000 and tens of thousands of dollars raised by participating nonprofits, it is easy to see why the community eagerly anticipates the third weekend of August.
When the balloons aren’t floating overhead, there is still plenty to do: dozens of food booths serve everything from hot dogs to lime rickeys, including breakfast for those early morning launches, all run by volunteers from local nonprofit groups. Along the walkway, which follows the river and winds along the edge of the festival grounds, craft and trade booths invite browsing, and a children’s area entertains everyone from toddlers to tweens. Live music can be enjoyed throughout the day and night at stages in both Lewiston and Auburn. From children’s shows and blues singers to jazz, pop, and oldies. A carnival, parade, and various demonstrations and contests round out the weekend events.
In its 20th season, the 2012 Great Falls Balloon Festival is sure to be a memorable one. Make plans to visit the Lewiston/Auburn area and be a part of this unique event. Balloon launches are scheduled for 6 am and 6 pm daily, Friday through Sunday, weather permitting. It doesn’t have to be just a spectator sport either—arrange in advance to take a flight yourself! FMI: www.greatfallsballoonfestival.org or (207) 783-2249.
From Points North: Take the Maine Turnpike (I-95) to Exit 80 (fomerly Exit 13) – Lewiston. At the end, turn left and follow signs for Lewiston on to Lisbon Street. Continue on Lisbon Street through the downtown. At the intersection of Main and Lisbon Street turn left. At next light, turn left onto Lincoln Street. Veteran’s Memorial Park will be on your right. Parking will be along the left on Lincoln Street and railroad Park is one block to your right.
From Points South: Take the Maine Turnpike (I-95) to Exit 75 (fomerly Exit12) – Auburn. At the exit turn left and follow Washington Street / Minot Avenue to the intersection with Court Street. Turn right onto Court Street. Cross the bridge into Lewiston. Take first right onto Lincoln Street. Parking will be along the left on Lincoln Street and Railroad Park is one block to your right.
Web Site: http://www.greatfallsballoonfestival.org
marketing at greatfallsballoonfestival dot org