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Enjoy hot air balloons, fireworks, and skydiving shows at one of Bloomington's favorite festivals.

The Kiwanis Indiana Balloon Festival is one of the most popular annual fall festivals in Bloomington. Attendees can enjoy:

  • Morning and evening hot air balloon launches
  • A "night glow" in which multiple balloons are tethered to the ground and illuminated with propane heaters
  • Helicopter rides
  • Pyrotechnic skydivers
  • Marionette puppet shows
  • Giant kite demonstrations
  • Live music
  • Fireworks
  • A wine & beer garden and food & commercial vendors
  • A virtual 5K walk/run

Use the following links to easily navigate to festival details and schedule of events:

 

Several hot air balloons taking off at dusk at the Indiana Balloon Festival

 

Festival Details

Dates & Times:
  • Friday, September 10 from 3:00-10:00 pm
  • Saturday, September 11 from 7:00 am-10:00 pm
  • Sunday, September 12 from 7:00 am-7:00 pm
Location:

Monroe County Fairgrounds
In-person festival attendees will enter through Gate 3 and park in the large field.
Drive-thru festival attendees will enter through Gate 1 and view the balloons from inside their vehicle. 

Admission: 

Admission costs directly support youth initiatives within the South Central Indiana Kiwanis Club. While tickets are available for purchase at the gate, purchasing your tickets in advance of the festival is encouraged. Upon arrival, you must present receipt of advance purchase in the form of a printed email confirmation or digital email confirmation on your smart phone. Ticket packages include:

  • A $20.00 single-day carload pass
    • Includes parking, gate admission, and a single-day wristband for each person in your vehicle.
  • A $30.00 weekend carload pass
    • Includes parking, gate admission, and a weekend wristband for each person in your vehicle. Weekend passes are only available for purchase in advance.
  • A $20.00 weekend pass for one individual
    • Includes parking, gate admission, and a weekend wristband for one person.

Children under the age of one year old do not require a pass. If you would like to attend the festival but have health concerns, the Kiwanis Indiana Balloon Festival is introducing a drive-thru component as well. Admission prices are the same for in-person and drive-thru guests.

Tickets can be purchased online or in-person at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater box office.

Please note that balloon rides are not included in the festival admission price. Should you wish to purchase an untethered balloon ride, you will need to book your ride and pay in advance. Tethered balloon rides will be available on a first-come, first-served basis during the festival, weather permitting. Limited space is available due to the limited number of hot air balloons. 


Schedule of Events

Friday, September 10
  • 3:00 PM // Gates open
  • 3:00-6:00 PM // Giant kite exhibit
  • 3:00-10:00 PM // Helicopter rides ($40.00 per person)
  • 4:00 PM // Vendors open
  • 4:00-6:00 PM // Music performance by Zach Day and Full Throttle
  • 4:00-8:00 PM // First Robotics exhibit
  • 4:00-10:00 PM // Wine & Beer Garden open
  • 4:30 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 4:30-5:30 PM // Kite-flying for kids (25 kites available)
  • 5:00-6:00 PM // Music performance by Hank Ruff
  • 5:00-8:00 PM // The Close Up of Michael Charlatan
  • 6:00 PM // Welcome by Isabella Lange, Miss Kiwanis Balloon Fest Outstanding Teen, followed by hot air balloon launch and tethered balloon rides ($10.00 per person)
  • 6:30 PM // Virtual 5K walk/run
  • 6:30-7:30 PM // Kiwanis Idol
  • 7:00 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 7:15 PM // Balloons inflate
  • 8:00 PM // Night Glow
  • 8:00-11:00 PM // Music performance by The Indigos Band
  • 9:00 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 9:30 PM // Pyrotechnic skydiving show
  • 10:00 PM // Commercial building vendors close
  • 11:00 PM // Grounds close

Saturday, September 11
  • 7:00 AM // Gates open
  • 7:30 AM // Hot air balloon launch
  • 9:00 AM-6:00 PM // Giant kite exhibit
  • 9:00 AM -10:00 PM // Helicopter rides ($40.00 per person)
  • 9:30 AM // Kite-flying for kids (50 kites available)
  • 11:00 AM-6:00 PM // First Robotics exhibit
  • 12:00 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 12:00-7:00 PM // The Close Up of Michael Charlatan
  • 2:00-4:00 PM // IU Health Community Health & Safety exhibits
  • 2:30 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 3:00 PM // WonderLab Science Activity Stations
  • 4:00-7:00 PM // Music performances by Tony Walker and The 2nd Half Band
  • 4:00-8:00 PM // Get photographed with Big Bird and Elmo
  • 4:00-10:00 PM // Wine & Beer Garden open
  • 5:00 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 6:00 PM // Hot air balloon launch and tethered balloon rides ($10.00 per person)
  • 7:00 PM // Welcome by Lily Padgett, Miss Kiwanis Balloon Fest, followed by a tribute by Lisa Bruns
  • 7:15 PM // Balloons inflate
  • 8:00 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 8:00-11:00 PM // Music performance by Endless Summer Band
  • 8:15 PM // Night Glow
  • 9:30 PM // Pyrotechnic skydiving show
  • 10:00 PM // Fireworks show; commercial building vendors close
  • 11:00 PM // Grounds close

Sunday, September 12
  • 7:00 AM // Gates open
  • 7:30 AM // Hot air balloon launch
  • 9:00 AM-6:00 PM // Giant kite exhibit and helicopter rides ($40.00 per person)
  • 10:00 AM-6:00 PM // The Close Up of Michael Charlatan
  • 11:00 AM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 12:00 PM // Vendors open
  • 1:00 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 1:00-4:00 PM // Unity by Camero car exhibit
  • 2:00-4:00 PM // Kiwanis Idol
  • 2:00-6:00 PM // Wine & Beer Garden open
  • 3:00 PM // WonderLab Science Activity Stations
  • 4:00 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving
  • 4:00-5:00 PM // Kite-flying for kids (25 kites available)
  • 4:00-6:00 PM // Music performance by Acre Brothers Band
  • 4:30 PM // Tribute Jump by Professional Skydiving Team
  • 5:30 PM // Balloons inflate
  • 6:00 PM // Bear Hollow wood carving; commercial building vendors close

Do note that the schedule will depend on weather conditions the day-of — in the event that balloons cannot be flown due to wind or rain, the festival will continue on with most grounded activities being available.

To download and print the festival's full schedule of events, click here

Staying overnight? Find a place to stay and browse other things to do during your visit this fall.

 

Check Out Bloomington's Annual Events

 

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