Weather Hot Air Balloon Fields at Hunterdon County Festival | Regional
READINGTON TWP., NJ – Hot air balloons rose, rose and departed early Friday morning during the 39th annual New Jersey Lottery Balloon Festival in Readington Township, Hunterdon County.
But the second flight scheduled for that evening did not take place, according to the organizers, because of high winds.
Instead of the roughly 100 hot air balloons the festival boasts, only a few were inflated on Friday night for the crowd to see. They stayed on the ground.
“I thought they would be flying in the sky, but they’re not,” said Reya Manohar, 5, visiting from Rockaway, NJ. “All have fallen.”
“It was beautiful and beautiful and we thought it was definitely going to fly,” said Reya’s mother, Jay Manohar. “But it was a little disappointing…but it looks like the weather doesn’t allow it today.”
Still, for many, the festival did not disappoint.
“It’s actually a lot of fun,” said 9-year-old Emily Mizerek of Morristown.
“It’s a family-friendly, three-day celebration of the magic of hot air ballooning,” explained Howard Freeman, the festival’s executive producer.
“We didn’t expect to see such a variety of dishes from different cultures,” said Karina Silva, from Long Island, New York.
The children enjoyed the games and attractions, such as a bungee ride.
“They like to tie you up, then they put the ropes on and you literally jump off and you can jump all the way to the top,” Mizerek said.
There was also live music and vendors.
“It’s our best event ever,” said Robert Williamson. “We do this every year…and everyone has fun. We make money. People are happy.”
Although some, like little Reya, can’t forget that the main event didn’t happen – “They didn’t steal,” Reya Manohar said. “They didn’t steal and I was like, come on, why don’t you steal?”
People have the rest of the weekend to watch the main event of dozens of hot air balloons flying through the sky.
Mom, Jay Manohar, says they’ll be back on Saturday.
“I hope the balloons will fly,” she said.
The festival lasts all weekend.