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No Balloon rally this year

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Smitty
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Age : Join date : 2008-12-31 Posts : 82 Location :

PostSubject: No Balloon rally this year   Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:50 pm

The rally has been put on hold this year.
LAS CRUCES — The recession and fuel prices have prompted the cancellation of the 17th annual Mesilla Valley Balloon Rally."It's
very disappointing, yes, but we are optimistic that we will revive it
for 2010," said pilot coordinator Patti Havstad, who has crewed and
helped organize the rally for 12 years.A typical rally costs about $10,000, Havstad said. It
costs about $100 per hour to fly a balloon, said John Shaw, pilot of
the red, black and silver Sunrise Drifter for the past decade."There's
the cost of insurance, the cost of the other vehicles and the beer we
drink," joked Shaw, a balloonist since 1973. "Propane right now, I'm
paying $2.80 a gallon. The average flight will take about 20 to 30
gallons."Last year, some balloonists had a contract for
discounted fuel — about $2 a gallon — through Cortez Gas Co., Shaw
said. But he said fuel won't ever get so expensive he'd stop flying.The same doesn't look to be true for many of the yearly rally's participants, Havstad said."What
will probably occur for a revived Mesilla Valley Balloon Rally is that
we will cut way back on the number of hot air balloons. In the past,
we've had up to 85 hot air balloons. It is more practical for us to
keep that number at about 50," Havstad said. "The spirit of the
community has been tremendous." "The city, the county, the public
— everyone that helps us with sponsorships and providing supplies. It's been really wonderful over the history of this rally."Around
20 businesses had signed up as sponsorships and 80 pilots could have
turned out for the nonprofit rally, scheduled for the weekend of Jan.
17-18. Most pilots make the trip from Albuquerque, though Las Cruces
has a piloting community of about 10."Many of our local Las
Cruces-area balloonists have cut way back on ballooning as a sport, as
a hobby," Havstad said, citing increased insurance costs and required
kinds of insurance, especially after Sept. 11. "They aren't
really people that make a lot of money," Havstad said. "They're people
that are doing this because they love the sport ... A lot of them are
working and they just have basic jobs that they're making ends meet
(with) like everyone else."Shaw disagreed, though he said ballooning does tend to be one's only hobby."Most
of the people that fly have got a little bit of money, not a lot, but
enough that they can afford to fly two, three times a month," he said.
"I've gone to the Albuquerque (International Balloon) Fiesta since '85
... but little rallies and little fly-ins like this are a lot more fun."
http://www.lcsun-news.com/ci_11390851
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Plumber
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Age : 40 Join date : 2008-12-01 Posts : 65 Location : California

PostSubject: Re: No Balloon rally this year   Thu Jan 08, 2009 6:18 pm

Thats a shame...its so neat to see these balloons up in the air flying.
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Eddie Haskell
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PostSubject: Re: No Balloon rally this year   Sun Jan 11, 2009 4:36 am

Plumber wrote:
Thats a shame...its so neat to see these balloons up in the air flying.
I agree maybe next year they will have it
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Smitty
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PostSubject: Re: No Balloon rally this year   Sun Jan 18, 2009 4:00 am

They had the balloon rally
http://www.lcsun-news.com/ci_11479840
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No Balloon rally this year

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