July 24-26 2020

Solberg Airport - Readington, NJ 973 882 5464

Countdown to Festival Fun

 

Until the 2020
 Quick Chek New Jersey
Festival of Ballooning!

 

 

Shore Point

Breaking News

How It All Began

03/08/2007 3:56 PM -

Howard.jpgIn 1989 John Korff and I decided to put our extensive experience in organizing and promoting world-class events to work for the state of New Jersey.  Our goal was to develop a festival where New Jersey was the star attraction and would be showcased in a positive light.

In 1992 we met Bill Lewis of Stanton, NJ, who had owned and organized the New Jersey Festival of Ballooning for nine years.  Working with Malcolm Forbes and Tom Curley of USA Today, Lewis brought about a dozen hot air balloons to the Union 76 Truck Stop on Route 78 for his event in 1983.  After two years they moved the festival to its current site at Solberg Airport, where it grew to 40 balloons and 40,000 attendees.  Lewis, however, was looking to sell the festival to someone with the wherewithal to take it to the next level.

Quite honestly, my only previous experience with balloons was watching the movie "The Wizard of Oz."  John and I decided to attend the Thunderbird Balloon Classic in Arizona to see what the "hot air" was all about.  We were immediately impressed by the amount of traffic and the number of people who appeared "spellbound" (including us!) by the sight of dozens of hot air balloons in the sky.  We immediately understood what people meant by the "Magic of Ballooning!"

In 1993 we acquired the New Jersey Festival of Ballooning and signed a long-term deal with Solberg Airport.  That same year also marked the beginning of a long-running partnership with Quick Chek, which is now entering its 15th year of title sponsorship.  Over the next few years, we grew the festival into the largest event in New Jersey and today it is the premier family entertainment event in the Northeast and the largest summertime balloon and music festival in North America.

Backed by more than 50 corporate partners including Quick Chek and PNC Bank, the festival has grown in stature both nationally and internationally.  The festival was designated as one of the Top 100 events in North America by the American Bus Association and was the recipient of the Governor's Award for the Best Special Event in New Jersey.  Festival attendees have come from all 50 states and as far away as China, Japan and Australia, and we enjoy bringing worldwide media coverage to the Garden State.

While the festival offers fun for people of all ages, we believe in "doing well by doing good."  We have dedicated our efforts to helping the community.  A portion of the proceeds from the festival are donated to the Children's Miracle Network, which funds two pediatric hospitals in New Jersey.  Last year, more than $150,000 was raised by the festival for local charities and more than $1 million has been returned to local and regional non-profits during the first 14 years we have produced this wonderful event.

This summer we look forward to celebrating the Silver Anniversary of the Quick Chek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning -- 25 years of family fun! -- with you and 175,000 of our closest friends on July 27th, 28th and 29th!



Search Archive »





Browse by Month »

October 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
October 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
February 2016
January 2016
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
July 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
July 2013
April 2013
February 2013
January 2013
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
March 2012
February 2012
October 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
December 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
March 2005
February 2005
December 2004