Thursday, 07 October 2021 13:01

Balloon fest at Richmond County Airport moved back; other weekend events still on

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Balloon fest at Richmond County Airport moved back; other weekend events still on Pixabay

ROCKINGHAM — Expected rainy weather has led to one weekend event being pushed back a week.


Richmond County Airport Manager Jason Gainey said Thursday that the Balloon Glow Tour event — North Carolina Festival of Ballooning — slated to start Friday has been moved to the weekend of Oct. 15-17.

According to the National Weather Service, there is a 50% chance of showers and thunderstorms during the day Friday, increasing to 60% in the evening. There is also a 50% chance on Saturday.

The Balloon Glow website has a disclaimer stating that the appearance of hot air balloons is dependent on the weather.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration, potential hazards with a balloon launch increase exponentially when surface wind speeds exceed 7 knots, or 8.05 mph.

The disclaimer also states that tickets are non-refundable, but can be redeemed at rescheduled events in case of postponement, or other Balloon Glow events.

Balloon Glow had an event scheduled last October at Rockingham Speedway, but it was canceled. A post on Facebook blamed the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services and Gov. Roy Cooper’s tight COVID restrictions.

Speedway officials say they have received multiple calls regarding the upcoming event.

On Oct. 1, officials posted to Facebook: “We have no such event scheduled; have not sold any tickets or other services for such an event; and have no other details.”

However, the speedway does have its own event this weekend: The East Coast Truck Festival.

Organizers say activities for Friday and Saturday will go on rain or shine, but a race scheduled for Sunday can’t be run in the rain. There is no rain predicted for that day.

Across the street, Rockingham Dragway is hosting Carolina Powerfest, more than 250 prizes to be awarded to drivers.

As of noon, the final concert of the annual Plaza Jam series was still a go.

The North Tower Band closes out the season, taking the stage in Cole Plaza at 6:30 p.m. The band made its Plaza Jam debut in 2019 and was set to perform again in 2020 — but the entire season was canceled due to state-imposed mass gathering restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hamlet Depot and Museums also announced that this week’s Food Truck Friday on Main will also go on, rain or shine. Trucks lined up for this week are Mama Blair’s, Wildfire Pizza and Big D’s Mini Donuts.