At Rio Rancho Balloons Aloft, Balloons Come To Kids

Balloons Aloft Comes to RRPS Elementary Schools
Posted on 09/28/2017
Balloons Aloft at Stapleton Elementary

For nine days each autumn, thousands of people flock to Albuquerque’s Balloon Fiesta Park to see the world’s greatest ballooning event.  But on the tenth day the balloonists return the favor, flocking to schools in Rio Rancho and Albuquerque to share the sport they love with our kids. 

All of Rio Rancho’s elementary schools and Shining Stars Preschool are scheduled to host 20 balloons participating in the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta’s 17th annual “Albuquerque Aloft” celebration.  The event will take place on Friday, October 6, the day before events begin at Balloon Fiesta Park.

Students at Balloons AloftBalloonists at the schools may elect to fly from the campus or may remain inflated at the school site.  Weather permitting, inflation is scheduled at approximately 6:50 AM, with launch scheduled for about 7:20 AM.  Schools are encouraged to invite parents, staff, and students to be on hand for the event, and parent and staff groups at some schools will have refreshments for sale. 

 Student in balloon at Balloons Aloft
Albuquerque Aloft – in Rio Rancho often referred to as “Balloons Aloft” -- is the only Balloon Fiesta event in which balloons launch from pre-designated sites outside Balloon Fiesta Park.  Balloons are assigned to participating elementary schools in Albuquerque and Rio Rancho.  The event allows students who may not be able to come to the Balloon Fiesta an opportunity to see and learn about hot-air balloons.

 The following Rio Rancho schools, Balloon Fiesta pilots, and balloons are scheduled (weather permitting) to participate in Balloons Aloft:

  • Shining Stars Preschool, 4477 9th Ave. NE:
    • Robert Fear,  Phobic, Rio Rancho, NM
    • Darrell Fear, Phobia in Flight, Artesia, NM
  • Cielo Azul Elementary School, 3804 Shiloh Rd. NE
    • Jane Schill, Whispering Spirit, Albuquerque, NM
    • Bruce Skach, ZROZRO7, Wichita, KS        
  • Colinas del Norte Elementary School, 1001 Night Sky Ave NE
    • Rebecca Curling, American Pie, Rio Rancho, NM
    • Peter Cuneo and Barbara Fricke, Sandia Sunrise II, Albuquerque, NM
  • Enchanted Hills Elementary School, 5400 Obregon NE 
    • Jessica Makin, Integrity,  Rio Rancho, NM
    • Fred Peek, O’Lough, Albuquerque, NM
  • Ernest Stapleton Elementary School, 3100 Stapleton Ave. NE
    • Al Lowenstein, Sunset Rise, Albuquerque, NM
    • Scott Vesely and Kim Vesely, Too Grateful, McKinney, TX & Rio Rancho, NM
  • Maggie M. Cordova Elementary School, 1500 Veranda Rd. SE 
    • Mike Gonzales, The Journey, Rio Rancho, NM
    • Mark Hofheins, The Viking Dragon, Rio Rancho, NM
  • Stapleton ES and Eagle Ridge MS Martin Luther King, Jr., Elementary School, 1301 Nicklaus Dr. SE
    • Ryan Davie, Twilight Zone¸ Rio Rancho, NM
    • Andy Richardson, Adams Balloon, Rio Rancho, NM
  • Puesta del Sol Elementary School, 450 Southern Blvd. SE 
    • Sharon Hartshorn, Seeking Nirvana, Corrales, NM
    • Trudy DeGraff, Cutie Dink, Albuquerque, NM
  • Rio Rancho Elementary School, 4601 Pepe Ortiz Rd., SE
    • Elizabeth Walker, Looking Glass, Rio Rancho, NM
    • Rachel Zimmer, Huckleberry, Rio Rancho, NM
  • Sandia Vista Elementary School, 6800 Franklin Rd. NE
    • Fred Lété, Twisted, Rio Rancho,NM
    • Michael Korfe, Buzzin’ Round/Bumpy, Albuquerque, NM
  • Vista Grande Elementary School, 7100 Chayote Rd. NE
    • Stacy Eldridge, Redneck Cowboy, Rio Rancho, NM
    • Keith Lutz, High Maintenance, Corrales, NM