Best time to go to Nevada

The Great Reno Balloon Race 2021

The world's largest free hot air balloon festival


Last updated: by Olha Savych
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The Great Reno Balloon Race takes place annually in September at Rancho San Rafael Regional Park in Reno, Nevada. This massive ballooning celebration features about 100 hot air balloons. Over 120,000 people attend the four-day festival every year. Held since 1982, The Great Reno Balloon Race has become an internationally-renowned event voted ‘Best Special Event in Reno’ and ‘Best Special Event in Northern Nevada.’

The Great Reno Balloon Race in Nevada - Best Season 2020

In addition to hot air balloons launch, the festival offers live music and entertainment. The main highlights of the festival include Mass Ascension Launch that starts at 7:00 am. Watch over 100 balloons going up from Rancho San Rafael Park, covering the sky with bright colors. After Mass Ascension, tethered rides will be available for children.

Best time for The Great Reno Balloon Race in Nevada 2020

Glow Show is another must-see taking place at dawn. Piloting a balloon in the dark is a dangerous task and requires lots of experience. It might be hard to come to the festival at 5 am on Saturday and Sunday, but the sight of over 35 balloons glowing and twinkling to music is definitely worth it!

The early morning "Glow Show" 2020
The early morning "Glow Show"

The Great Reno Balloon Race’s Tissue Paper Balloon Launch is a community event where 2,000 school students launch colorful hand-made hot-air balloons that they made by themselves.

For those who would rather stay on the ground than go up in the sky, there's plenty of things to do as well. Balloon Boulevard vendors offer crafts, arts, souvenirs, food, and drinks. There is also GRBR apparel and memorabilia.

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