Tethered balloons raise money for charity in North Carolina

The 40th annual BalloonFest took place in North Carolina recently, demonstrating how marketing and charity fundraising can go hand in hand.

Balloons have been manufactured in the Statesville area for more than three decades now, and real estate agent Re/Max took centre stage at this year’s festival with a specially designed vessel. It was 35 years to the week since the firm launched its first promotional hot air balloon at a festival in Albuquerque.

Speaking about the effects of advertising using balloons, pilot Pete Colwell stated:

“You may drive by a billboard and not think two cents about it, but you see a balloon going across I-40 out here and you’ll probably remember it and tell someone about it when you get home.”

On the charitable front, tethered hot air balloon rides raised more than $2,000 at last year’s event, although 2013’s figures are yet to be totalled. This year, the charges were around $5 per child and $10 per adult. According to Mr Colwell, a tethered ride allows the pilot to give the experience of being in a hot air balloon to more people than a conventional ride would.

One Mooresville resident, Lori Nielsen, was enthusiastic about the experience that she and her four children had enjoyed. She admitted to being frightened of heights and said that she appreciated the fact that the balloon was connected to the ground. She also said that her children had had a great time at their first ever BalloonFest.

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