The Seventh Annual Citrus Classic Balloon Festival in Santa Paula was a hit with thousands of people from all over Southern California who came to see the colorful balloons.
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The festival spanned over the course of two days with opening night on Friday, July 25. The festival was open from 6:30 a.m. Saturday morning through 11 p.m. that evening.
“We were coming home from the beach and saw the balloons last year,” said Saugus resident Shelly Kanke. “We wanted to come this year.”
Kanke slid down one of the slide attractions with her children Aiden Kanke, 10, and Emily Kanke, 5.
Dozens of food and merchandise vendors attended the event selling items from bacon-wrapped hot dogs to handmade jewelry.
The festival officials kept families busy all day with dozens of entertainment attractions including live bands, a car show, crafts and pony rides.
“It’s our first time here,” said Uriel Huerta, of Canyon Country. “Our neighbor said it was a good place to bring the kids and enjoy some hot air balloons and good food.”
Huerta was accompanied by his wife Tania Huerta and son Noah Huerta, 4, who won a slot car race and received a checkered flag as a prize.
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Attendees could also attend the ‘Sunset Wine Dinner’ on Friday or the ‘Firestone Walker Craft Beer Dinner’ on Saturday.
The event featured Glow ‘N’ Show Car Show on Saturday with several car and featured a plane flyby, skydivers, aerobatic stunts, vintage tractors and beer tasting.
More than 25 hot air balloons and pilots traveled from all over the country to participate in this event, according to the website.
“I have always wanted to ride a hot air balloon,” said Susana Cazares, who came with her family from Oxnard.
“It was our first time coming here so we did not know about all of the things going on at the event. We ate before we came but that was not a good idea,” added Susana Cazares’ husband Julian Cazares. “We would come back next year.”
The event concluded Saturday evening with the 805 Glow sponsored by Firestone Walker and “Glow Party” with a live DJ.
“One of the highlights of this year was the 20 vintage trailers,” said Carla Edwards, the event’s organizer and founder. “The weather was perfect and we had a great turnout. It was a nice time and the most rewarding thing was when you the children are thrilled to see the ballooons. Some of them are seven stories tall.”
Source: Santa Clarita News