Sunday, September 25, 2011

Prosser Balloon Festival

This past weekend was the Prosser balloon rally. It was fun. We should have gone over Friday night but we had another engagement. Balloon rallies are very dependent on weather. Saturday morning, when we weren't there, was a perfect day for a mass ascension. Kim was there and took mass pictures.

Saturday morning.

Aren't they lovely? Thank you, Kim, for the images.

Prosser is a very small town in eastern Washington; in a heavily agricultural part of the state. Corn, cherries, apples, and grapes. Lots and lots of grapes. Everywhere you look, there is a winery. It was a warm there Saturday, it was close to 90.
This is a tavern in Prosser, I love the fact that they also buy gold. This tickles me. Bring gold, drink beer.

There are several antique stores. Cute stuff.

In addition to the balloons, there was a street fair going on. Crafts, food, the usual.

Part of the musical offering was a marimba band. Marimbas! When have you ever seen that? They were really very good. These are high school kids.

One of the food vendors was doing major fried stuff. Fish and chips, and PICKLES.

Never eat these, they're really awful. As Kim said, they taste like fried salt.

There was also face painting for the kids. I stalked this little kid trying to get a shot of him. He had a pretty good design.

The other thing they do is chalk drawings on the street.

These are pretty good.

There was a balloon glow Saturday night. We really didn't know what to expect. We got there when the gates to the high school opened and staked out our turf on the grand stand. There was a steel band playing. There was a middle school band, and a high school band as well. They're from the Tri-cities area. I find it very interesting that Prosser and Richland have programs for marimba and steel drum. The steel drum website is here.

The steel drum bands were really good, and very engaging. Here is crowd participation in the limbo, while the band was playing the Harry Belafonte song "Jump in the Line". The kids just loved it.

Then they played a can-can, and the non-playing kids got out and danced. They had a pretty good line going.

The kids in the bands were just a hoot to watch. They had a tremendous amount of poise and self-confidence. I think every school should have steel drum bands.

Then it was time to inflate the 5 balloons that were there for the glow. They roll them out on the field and use a giant fan to get air into them. As they inflate, then they light off the burners to make hot air.

There was a show. They flamed all at once, or one at a time in time to the music. It was really well done and we enjoyed it very much. If you get a chance to see a glow, you should go.

The balloons couldn't fly this morning - too windy. There was a significant front moving through. We drove home taking a diversion off I90 between Yakima and Ellensburg on the Canyon Road. It's very scenic. Eastern Washington is high desert and has its own severe beauty.

Coming over the Snoqualmie Pass, the clouds were in the trees and it rained. Welcome to fall in the GPNW.

Tomorrow is supposed to bring us heavy winds and high winds. It's time to GO!

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