Great Reno Balloon Race, September 8 - 10, 2017
Since its humble beginnings in 1982, the Great Reno Balloon Race has grown dramatically in size from just 20 hot-air balloons to a world-renowned event featuring close to 100 hot-air balloons lifting off from Rancho San Rafael Regional Park.
The GRBR is nothing short of tradition. On the ground, spectators—some clad in pajamas—sit atop blankets or folding chairs gripping hot beverages and gaze into the early morning sky for the ethereal Glow Show that takes place before the sun even peeks above the horizon.
Following that, some hot-air balloons launch for Dawn Patrol, the rest rise later at Mass Ascension, and a select group begins the completion portion of the race, while tens of thousands of visitors look on in awe, patronize vendors and take tethered rides in the balloons that aren't gunning for the win.
Each morning, pilots are briefed about wind speeds and directions at various “ceilings” or elevation measurements. The pilots use this information along with the forecasted weather changes and the local terrain as navigational tools. Skill and consistency are the keys to a victory and a piece of the $11,000 prize purse.
Spectators can expect to see a variety of special-shaped balloons, including Angry Birds; Jewel, a hummingbird; Pegleg Pete, a pirate parrot; Rio Grande Raider, a pirate ship; SnoBird, a camera carrying penguin; Miss Bell, a replica of the Liberty Bell; Smokey Bear; Sushi; Gus T. Guppy; Wells Fargo’s Cent’re Stage; Pencil Boy and more.
Location: Rancho San Rafael Regional Park, 1595 N. Sierra St., Reno
For schedule and more information visit: https://renoballoon.com/event-info/schedule-of-events/