Balloons Over Sussex Take Flight in Georgetown
GEORGETOWN, Del. - The hot air balloon festival made its return after more than a decade-long hiatus. As the sun rose Sunday morning, hot air balloons ascended into the sky over Georgetown.
Balloons Over Sussex took place on Saturday and Sunday behind the Delaware Coastal Airport. It was too windy for the balloons to take flight on Saturday afternoon. On Sunday morning, people arrived at 6 a.m. to see balloons soar over Sussex County.
The Balloons Over Sussex was a place for all ages. It featured live entertainment, food vendors, arts and crafts, a balloon glow, and a balloon walk-about.
Christie Rosania drove from Pennsylvania to catch all the action firsthand. Rosania says it was an experience she will never forget.
"I didn't think we could be a close as we were to the balloons. I mean you hear all about festivals, that usually have things gated off and you can't get close to the balloons. I mean we were right on top of them and it was a very cool sight to see for the first time," said Rosania.
Balloonist Dr. Charles Wagner started the festival back in the 1990's. The festival lasted for 13 years, where the event was originally held in Milton, Del. Wagner says he is helping bring back the festival this year to educate the community.
"The amount of knowledge that goes into ballooning is ancient. It's all new technology, fabrics, and fueling. The kids get to see that up close and they get to link the science with the flying," Wagner said.
Gina Derrickson, the director of development at Sussex Academy, has been preparing this event for over a year now. This festival came to life by the hands of students and their families at Sussex Academy and locals. Derrickson says the festival will help Sussex Academy pay for two new science labs.
"Instead of doing a capital campaign, Sussex Academy thought of this event. We like to do things that involved our community and families. We want everyone to come have fun and enjoy it," Derrickson said.
After 13 years balloons are floating in the air, filling the skies of Sussex County once again. Gina Derrickson of Sussex Academy hopes Sussex Academy will continue to host the balloon festival for years to come.