Countless air-filled balloons, some carrying gift certificates for prizes, converged on Main St. in Dansville on Friday, August 6th 1982 after Carroll Teitsworth of Groveland took off in his hot-air balloon from the business district. This event was part of a promotion for the Dansville Business Association’s annual Sidewalk Days. During Labor Day weekend of that same year, the ninth annual Oktoberfest and the first “Greit Oktoberfest Balloon Race” took place. This special event began an annual tradition in Dansville which eventually would transform into the NYS Festival of Balloons [NYSFOB]. The event grew from 18 balloons sponsored by local businesses to a four day event with multiple launches and thousands of spectators visiting the Dansville area to watch the skies in the valley fill with the colorful creations.
The NYS Festival of Balloons kicks off the event with a Balloon Glow that takes place on the Brae Burn Golf course. Launches of the hot air balloons take place Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings as well as Saturday, Sunday, Monday morning, weather permitting. While the balloons are the focal point of the event, there is a wide variety of other events also taking place. The Dansville Municipal Airport field fills with arts & craft vendors, food vendors, a classic car show, musical performances, rides and amusement activities for children as well as numerous other events.
To learn more about this spectacular event, visit the official NYS Festival of Balloons website.