Summer takes flight at Friday & Saturday’s Citrus Classic Balloon Festival with a glow

July 25, 2012
Santa Paula News

Thousands of people will let their summer take flight with hot air balloons inflated over scenic citrus orchards and rolling hills at this weekend’s 5th Annual Citrus Balloon Festival at Limoneira Soccer Fields.

According to Carla Edwards, Founder and Coordinator of the event, those attending the July 27-28 festival will be able to, “Mingle with balloon pilots who have trading cards for the kids, enjoy outdoor dining, wine and beer tastings, our car show this year featuring 150 fantastic vehicles, browse arts and craft vendors and on Friday connect kids with a special interactive, fun Discovery Day of agriculture and balloons.” 

Other activities include relaxing with live music making the festival a perfect “day trip,” or weekend getaway for families or those looking for a romantic weekend.

And this year guests will be able to visit Historic Downtown Santa Paula with special transportation to the Central Business District where restaurants and merchants are anticipating serving those taking a break from ballooning. 

Ag Alley, a reality based farm experience for children will put the citrus in the festival with Agriculture Discovery Stations on Friday, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. during the festival.

On Friday’s Kids Discovery Day there are special prices for admission: Kids 7 and younger are FREE and it’s only $5 for an Adult/Youth (8-14) Combo Ticket.

Gates to the festival will open at 6:30 a.m. both days and weather permitting tethered rides will be available starting at 7 a.m. The festival will close each day at 11:30 p.m. 

Hundreds of people are looking forward to the Balloon Sunset Dinner where fine dining doesn’t hide the views of the balloons - weather permitting! - as they are inflated and tethered offering a Sunset Glow of illumination set to music with a coordinated program. Saturday will also offer a Glow, a spectacular and singular experience that creates a lifetime memory. 

And speaking of a singular experience, you can get information and a preview of this year’s festival by visiting 

Friday and Saturday will have nonstop entertainment by top-flight bands including Caught Red-Handed, Juano & Friends, Zachary James & The Seeing Eyes, Durango and Army of Freshman among others that will keep you dancing and provide the perfect accompaniment to the backdrop of exciting ballooning.

Edwards said everyone no matter what their age is a kid when it comes to watching the balloons, “They’re eyes light up... it’s wondrous, really beautiful especially at night for the Glows.”

The weather of course can challenge the event’s schedule of ballooning but even with the globes there’s globs of fun to be had for any age and interest.

Santa Paula Airport aviators will even offer thrilling displays and other surprises.

The festival is located at 18249 E. Telegraph Road just north of Highway 126 and just east of Hallock Drive.

Advance tickets now available on-line, via phone and at staffed ticket locations.

Adults $8 advance prior to July 25th/$10 gate; Youth (5-14) $4 advance prior to July 25th/$5 gate; 5 and under free. Tickets valid for 1 day only.

Free shuttles will service free municipal parking lots. Or select For-Fee Festival Lots within .5 mile of festival grounds (walkable or short shuttle) for $7 per car, $10 larger vehicles or more than 5 passengers, $12 RVs.

You can save even more with free parking during Kids Discovery Day (remember: Friday only 6:30 a.m. - 3 p.m.) and Saturday Sunrise Balloons (6:30 a.m. - 10 a.m. in select Festival Lots only). 

Fillmore & Western Railways will shuttle visitors to the Historic Main Street area for free and the festival will feature a Recycled Art Contest, water balls, inflatables and family rides, plenty of places to eat, food trucks and vendors and plenty of merchants offering fine items as well as souvenirs!

For more information visit

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