Balloon and Rib Fest
July 9-July 12 | Wausau Downtown Airport
Balloon & Rib Fest Event Schedule
Voted Wausau’s Favorite Event four years running, the Balloon & Rib Fest has something for everyone. Don’t believe us? We’ve got: Hot air balloons, 6 Rib Vendors, kites, pig racing, bounce houses, fantastic food, and the LARGEST fireworks show in the region. This year’s presenting sponsor is the BA & Esther Greenheck Foundation.
The fun starts on Thursday, July 9 and runs through Sunday, July 12 in 2015!
REGISTER for the Balloon Chase 5K Run/Walk Today!
Held at Wausau Downtown Airport
There is no gate fee. There are fees for food, drinks, rides, games, merchandise, etc.
A FREE Shuttle Bus will take you between the Balloon and Rib Fest to Chalkfest in Wausau’s River District. The bus stops just outside the Grand Theater. The bus drops off passengers very near the entrance to the fest! Shuttle times are 5-11pm on Friday and 11am-11pm on Saturday!
Parking is VERY limited at the event. It is limited to nearby residential streets. There is handicap parking in the airport lot and bike/motorcycle parking near that lot. WE highly encourages you to utilize the shuttles.
If the weather is favorable for the hot air balloons, launches/glows will happen at the following times:
Thursday: 6pm launch 8:30pm glow
Friday:6pm launch 8:30pm glow sponsored by Wausau Smiles
Saturday: 6am/6pm launch 8:30pm glow sponsored by Eye Clinic of WI
Sunday: 6am launch
Please keep in mind weather is a MAJOR factor in the balloons to launch and glow. Although it may be sunny and seemingly “perfect” out, wind is always a factor. The pilots want to show off their beautiful balloons and will attempt to launch/glow at all opportunities.
Balloons inflate and light themselves from within. The sight of hot air balloons lit up like giant light bulbs is breathtaking. Pilots will coordinate ‘all burns’ where they fire up their burners illuminating their balloons all at once and also perform ‘count downs’.
BALLOON CHASE CREW:
Chase crews help the pilot inflate his or her balloon. They then follow the balloon in the chase vehicle (usually a truck or SUV that pulls a trailer). The pilot and chase vehicle communicate by two-way radio so that the crew is ready when the pilot lands the balloon. If you are interested in being a crew member please contact Lindsey at firstname.lastname@example.org
Due to the liability, hot air balloon rides do not occur at this event.
There are 6 rib vendors that come to Rib Fest, which takes place at the airport as well. The prices will vary. There is a contest for best ribs, so be sure to try more than 1 vendors’ ribs!
There is other food available if you do not want ribs! Prices vary.
The area’s BEST fireworks will take place on Friday and Saturday night. The big night is Saturday!! Fireworks start after the balloon glows! Fireworks are sponsored by Greenheck Fan
There will be a petting zoo, bounce house, games, pig racing, “Ham It Up” photo booth, Chevy-Packers Tour, pancake breakfast and more! Check out this SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
ADDITIONAL HELPFUL INFORMATION:
No carry-ins are allowed. Large bags and backpacks will be subject to inspection.
Pets need to be left at home. They are not allowed on airport grounds.
There is NO smoking allowed at the event due to the large amount of propane there.
There is an ATM on-site. Service charges may apply.
There is a very limited number of folding chairs available. WE highly recommends bringing your own folding chair. NO tents/awnings will be allowed.
There are portable bathrooms located at the fest.
The following hotels are being offered at a discounted rate for attendees of Balloon & Rib Fest:
Fairfield Inn & Suites
7100 Stoneridge Drive, Weston
715-241-8400 (Mention Balloon Fest For Discounted Rate)
CLICK HERE TO BOOK ONLINE
2101 N Mountain Road, Wausau
715-842-0711 (Mention Balloon Fest For Discounted Rate)
Have more questions about the event? Check out the FAQ page!