July 15, 2024
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Chesapeake Bay Balloon Festival — August 5-7, 2022

Now in its 6th year, the Chesapeake Bay Balloon Festival is set to fly away August 5-7, 2022, in Cordova, MD, at Triple Creek Vineyard.

There is nothing quite as serene as witnessing hot air balloons lift off through an early morning mist and float across farmhouses, fields, and unsuspecting fishermen. The Chesapeake Bay Balloon Festival delivers an entire weekend family experience. Photo opportunities like the after-dark balloon glow will make your Instagram followers jealous. Check flying in a hot air balloon off your bucket list with a tethered ride 50’ in the air and tied off to the ground.

There will be live music by 80’s favorite Saved by Zero and singer-songwriter Caleb Stine, who just released a new album, “Life and Times of a Handyman.” The Art Village offers shopping for those who appreciate one-of-a-kind gifts from 40+ artists and crafters. Valencia Glass operates an entire glass blowing studio onsite. A fireworks display is planned for Sunday night.

Wine from Triple Creek is for sale; styles from sweet Blackberry Pickin’ to dry red Chambourcin and white Clovelly Chardonnay. Local craft beer is on tap. Ten Eyck Brewing of Queenstown, MD, is partnering with Triple Creek to offer Stealing Fire Italian Pilsner in a commemorative balloon festival can.

Food has been carefully curated. Festival goers will find specialty bacon (chocolate dipped, applewood smoked, wrapped around jalapenos, and you get the point), homemade ice cream, fresh squeezed handmade smoothies, shrimp ceviche, brisket and pulled pork with collards and mac ‘n cheese, tacos de carne asada, gyros, and so much more.

For the kids, there is face painting, kid’s crafts, bouncy houses, games, and plenty of room to run around, throw a frisbee, or find a corn-hole game.

Glamping Tent are also available. This canvas tent has a queen bed, linens, furniture, and views of the vineyard. Bring your own RV or tent to set up in the hay-field-turned-campground on this family farm. Walk to the festival grounds. Make new friends around a nightly campfire with fixins’ for s’mores included. Cool off on a slip ‘n slide and splash pad only for campers.

Alex Spies is a 5th-generation family farmer and owner of Triple Creek Vineyard. He grows grapes, various row crops, and cattle. While farming full-time, he has produced the Chesapeake Bay Balloon Festival, Triple Creek All-American Pro Rodeo, and Ocean City Classic PBR Championship Bull Riding, which have generated funds for local volunteer fire companies, and cancer research and cancer patients, and the Special Olympics.

He explains what makes this festival so unique. “Coming in 2023, the events will be supporting a new non-profit, American Farm Foundation, run by family farmers in Maryland. The mission is to educate the public about agriculture, support ag entrepreneurs who want to launch new ag-related businesses and create meaningful experiences with our farms. I know firsthand the challenges of making a living for multiple generations of farmers from the same farm. We adapted by building greenhouses, planting grapes, opening a wine tasting room, and learning how to produce events that deliver a great customer experience to create awareness of our farm and wine operation. Now it’s time I share what I’ve learned about agritourism to help other farmers.”

Alex’s business partner, Scott Powers, continues, “We endeavor to provide a fun experience with agriculture, in a relaxed farm setting, and then weave in a bit of ag education about sourcing food from local farmers and even create a market for value-added farm products like honey, cheese, and wine. The revenue produced by events like the balloon festival can go a long way to find new solutions to these issues.”

The festival is supported by sponsors Fred Frederick Dodge-Jeep-Ram, RE/MAX Realty, and GROWMARK. With 13,000-15,000 attendees annually, there is plenty of room for more sponsors. Read about Sponsor Packages at the festival website or send an email to [email protected] to request a call to design a custom sponsorship to best meet your business needs.

Admission for all three days is only $30 for adults and $5 for children.

For more information about Triple Creek Events and the Chesapeake Bay Balloon Festival, go to  www.triplecreekevents.com or www.chesapeakebayballoonfestival.com/about

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