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36th annual Hot Air Balloon Rodeo in Steamboat Springs: Everything you need to know

36th annual Hot Air Balloon Rodeo in Steamboat Springs: Everything you need to know
Posted at 8:25 PM, Jul 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-07 22:25:25-04

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. – If you could not make it to the hot air balloon show in Frederick last month, you have another chance to enjoy some beautiful sights in Steamboat Springs this weekend.

Taking place along Highway 40 both Saturday and Sunday, this annual festival offers “artistry and color both on canvases and in the air.” Here’s everything you need to know about the 36th annual Hot Air Balloon Rodeo and Art in the Park festival:

How early will I have to wake up to see the hot air balloons?

Pretty early. The balloon inflation begins at 6 a.m. at Bald Eagle Lake. About 30 minutes later, the Balloon Rodeo takes place until 9:30 a.m., followed by other events (see below for the full schedule).

OK, so where can I park?

Unfortunately, there is no public parking lot for the event. There will be, however, free transportation provided from the Meadows parking lot on Pine Grove Road. The parking lot is free of charge.

While there is no charge to park, city officials say you should consider giving a $5 per car “to help insure the longevity of the most colorful weekend in Steamboat Springs!”

Officials also recommend visitors to walk, ride their bikes or take the shuttle from the hotel or lodge in order to view this event.

Parking along Highway 40 is strictly forbidden.

Got it. But I can bring my pet, right?

No. No dogs or any other animals will be allowed at the hot air balloon festival due to balloon hazards.

What happens at the Hot Air Balloon Rodeo?

The rodeo portion of the festival consists of fun contests like dipping into Bald Eagle Lake “and since balloon pilots can be pretty competitive, you’re guaranteed a good show,” say city officials.

But it doesn’t end there. Once the balloons are off the ground, you’ll be able to grab breakfast and get a cup of coffee at one of the local vendors that will be at the event.

You can even let the kids roam free at the kids’ zone as you watch the balloons overtake the Yampa Valley sky.

Is that all?

Not quite! Just minutes away from the rodeo, you can partake in another colorful event in Steamboat Springs: The annual Art in the Park festival. There will be arts and crafts, performances and an interactive children’s area will fill your day.

If that’s not enough for you, then you’ll want to stay for the Balloon Glow.

Officials suggest you head back to the mountain area and take in the colors as the balloon glow lights up on Mt. Werner.  

You’ll have the opportunity to walk among the balloons and take photos from several restaurant patios and hotel and condo balconies at the base of the mountain.

Full schedule of events

Saturday, July 8:

  • 6 a.m.  Launch field opens and transportation begins from the Meadows parking lot. No public parking at the event. No dogs are allowed due to balloon hazards.
  • 6 a.m.  Balloon Inflation, Bald Eagle Lake
  • 6:30 - 9:30 a.m.  Balloon Rodeo, Bald Eagle Lake
  • 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.  Art in the Park, West Lincoln Park
  • 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. Farmers Market, Downtown Steamboat
  • 7:00 p.m. Emily Bear Trio, Strings Music Pavilion
  • 7:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Pro Rodeo Series, Brent Romick Arena
  • 8:15 - 9 p.m.  Balloon Glow, Gondola Base Area

Sunday, July 9:

  • 6 a.m.  Launch field opens and transportation begins from the Meadows parking lot. No public parking at the event. No dogs are allowed due to balloon hazards.
  • 6 a.m.  Balloon Inflation, Bald Eagle Lake
  • 6:30 - 9:30 a.m.  Balloon Rodeo, Bald Eagle Lake
  • 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.  Art in the Park, West Lincoln Park

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