Pop-up hot air balloon event brings inflated joy

TWO gigantic hot air balloons took centre stage at the Bandar Baru Air Itam night market field here.


The balloon ‘pop-up’ event, held for the first time in Paya Terubong, drew hundreds of visitors although it was held early in the morning on a weekday.


Visitors taking part in the zumba session during the balloon ‘pop-up’ event in Bandar Baru Air Itam.


Penang Tourism Development, Arts, Culture and Heritage Committee chairman Yeoh Soon Hin said the balloon ‘pop-up’ was one of the pre-events held, leading up the Penang Hot Air Balloon Fiesta on Feb 1 and 2 at Padang Polo.


“We want the community to have an unforgettable experience; witnessing the hot air balloons while enjoying various activities and performances, such as, the zumba sessions and the lion dances,” he said.


Visitors dance to the music at the balloon ‘pop-up’ event.


Yeoh also spoke about the Penang Hot Air Balloon Fiesta.


“Held for the sixth consecutive time, the Penang Hot Air Balloon Fiesta is the only hot air balloon fiesta held on an island.


“The fiesta will feature 15 hot air balloons from all over the world, such as, the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, United States, Canada, Brazil, Australia, Taiwan and Japan.


“There will be ticketed tethered balloon rides where one can go up as high as 60 feet; ‘cold inflation’ activity where visitors can walk into a balloon envelope that is filled with cold air as it lies on the ground and other family-friendly activities at the fiesta,” Yeoh told reporters at the balloon ‘pop-up’ event today.


Yeoh (centre, in white) distributing oranges to the public.


Yeoh, accompanied by two red ‘lions’ and a rat mascot, also distributed mandarin oranges to the visitors at the balloon ‘pop-up’ event.


Shutterbugs did not miss the opportunity to take beautiful photos at the event.


Visitors taking photos with the hot air balloons.


Visit http://www.penanghotairballoonfiesta.com/ for more information about the Penang Hot Air Balloon Fiesta.



Story and pix by Christopher Tan