Illinois May 04, 2017
10 Incredible Hot Air Balloon Festivals That Only Happen In Illinois
Illinois has a festival to celebrate just about everything, but it’s the ones that turn your eyes to the skies that are the most spectacular. Hot air balloons are stunning whether they’re on the ground or amongst the clouds, and so are the views. Day or night, these incredible balloon festivals amaze and delight.
Even if your local community doesn’t host one of these high-flying events, there’s sure to be one coming up soon nearby. Keep scrolling for dates and locations so you don’t miss a thing.
1. Great Galena Balloon Race - June 16-18, 2017
Enjoy over 20 hot air balloons at this festival, which also hosts wine and ale tastings. The event takes place at Eagle Ridge Resort and Spa, which is located at 444 Eagle Ridge Dr. Galena, Illinois. Proceeds support charities for children with diabetes.
2. Eyes to the Skies Festival - June 30 - July 2, 2017
For over three decades, this festival has been enjoyed by locals who love a good carnival and spectacular sights. Hundreds of residents volunteer each year to make this event happen at 1825 Short St. Lisle, Illinois.
3. Balloons Over Vermilion - July 14-15, 2017
This wonderful festival includes live music, rides, and an antique car show in addition to many breathtaking hot air balloons. The event takes place at the Vermilion County Regional Airport located at 22633 N Bowman Ave. Danville, Illinois.
4. The Great Ballon Race - July 28-29, 2017
This event features over 20 balloons competing in a race and for awards. There are also food vendors, crafts for kids, and a night glow. Catch the fun at Lake Storey Park in Galesburg, Illinois.
5. Lincoln Balloon Festival - August 25-26, 2017
This event takes place at the Logan County airport (1351 Airport Rd. Lincoln, Illinois) and features a balloon glow as well as rides. In addition to balloons, you can also enjoy the carnival and other fun activities.
6. Grayslake Color Aloft Balloon Festival - August 26, 2017
For one day only, you can enjoy free admission to whitness hot air balloon competitions and a night launch. The event takes place in Central Park located at 250 Library Lane Grayslake, Illinois.
7. Hot Air Balloons Over Marine - September 2017
This festival is typically run by volunteers and features food, entertainment, and Balloon Glow, which is where the night sky is lit up with the light from the balloons. Official dates will be available on the event's Facebook page soon. It typically takes place at 155 North Duncan St. Marine, Illinois.
8. Harvard Balloon Festival - September 1-3, 2017
This Labor Day event includes both evening and nighttime launches. The festival takes place at the City of Harvard Milky Way park located at 300 Lawrence Rd. Harvard, Illinois.
9. Quad Cities Balloon Festival - September 22-23, 2017
This volunteer-run festival is one of the only ones with free admission, but it also benefits the local food bank. The event takes place on the Rock Island County Fairgrounds located at 4200 Archer Drive, East Moline, Illinois.
10. Lake Shelbyville Balloon Fest - October 6-8, 2017
This event includes a cookout and activities for kids. Launches take place both at sunset and sunrise either at Dam West Recreational Center (14498-14510 County Rd. 1430 N. Carlyle, Illinois) or the local airport.
If you love community fun, don’t miss
15 Illinois festivals you’ve never heard of.
Which of these balloon festivals have you visited? Tell us about your experiences below!