'Truly a spiritual experience' - New Jersey balloon festival hits the summer sky

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on July 26, 2019 - Duration: 02:07s

'Truly a spiritual experience' - New Jersey balloon festival hits the summer sky

Balloonists take flight for the 37th annual QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning.

Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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'Truly a spiritual experience' - New Jersey balloon festival hits the summer sky

More than 100 hot air balloons will fill the summer sky for the 37th annual QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning from Friday (July 26) through Sunday (July 28).

The balloons get inflated and ascend each day at 6:30 a.m.

And 6:30 p.m.

"My favorite time in the weekend is Saturday or Sunday morning ascensions, it's before it gets a little warm out here, it's before it's that crowded," said Howard Freeman, executive producer for the festival.

"When you saw this morning, the sun coming up over the Cushetunk Mountains, I mean it was truly a spiritual experience." Balloons in animal shapes including a giant panda, a frog and a cat were fired up to float above the trees in Readington Township, New Jersey.

The three-day event, with more than 165,000 people expected to attend, has grown to be the largest summertime hot air balloon and music festival in North America and "no longer your father's balloon festival," said Freeman.

(Production: Andrew Hofstetter / Roselle Chen)

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