Countdown to festival fun:

Dennis DeYoung & Music of Styx Headline Festival

June 21, 2005

West Caldwell , NJ , June 21, 2005 — Acclaimed recording artist Dennis DeYoung and his band will play the music of Styx as one of the headline musical attractions at the upcoming 2005 Quick Chek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning In Association With PNC Bank, on the weekend of July 29-31 from the Solberg Airport in Readington , NJ .An original keyboardist/vocalist with the popular band Styx in the 1970s, DeYoung will headline on the Main Stage on Saturday, July 30 at 8 p.m.   He will perform a number of legendary Styx hits, including “Babe,” Lady,” “Come Sail Away,” “Grand Illusion,” and many more.DeYoung continues to cultivate a successful solo career. Recording on his own as early as 1984, he produced four impressive solo albums — “Desert Moon,” “Back To The World” and “Boomchild” before reuniting briefly with his former band-mates in 1990.After a brief reunion, Styx disbanded a second time shortly after releasing an album, “Edge Of The Century.” DeYoung used the opportunity to record his fourth solo album, “10 On Broadway.”  Although he returned to Styx when they reunited again in 1996, and played on their first studio album in eight years, “Return To Paradise,” a serious viral ailment, that made him sensitive to light, caused him to bow out of a national tour.The Quick Chek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning is North America ’s largest summertime family oriented celebration of the magic of ballooning, featuring scores of rides and attractions for kids, parents and festival-goers of all ages.  Hot air balloon ascensions with up to 125 sport and special-shape balloons are scheduled for Friday at 6:30 p.m. , Saturday and Sunday at 6:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. , wind and weather permitting.In addition to DeYoung, this year’s concert series kicks off Friday night at 8 p.m. with Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone, followed by the Marriott Hotels Fireworks Extravaganza at 9:30 p.m.   On Saturday, DeYoung will be followed by the “ NJ Office of Travel and Tourism Balloon Glow” at 9 p.m. The legendary Doobie Brothers, presented by PNC Bank, will be the culminating musical attraction on Sunday at 3 p.m.   Tickets to the annual event are $17 for adults and $7 for children 54 inches tall and under when purchased in advance at Quick Chek Food Stores, available through July 28.  Discounted tickets are also available online at www.balloonfestival.com.Daily admission during the festival is $20 for adults and $10 for children 54 inches tall and under. Gate ticket prices for festival admission have remained the same for the last eight years.     Also added to this year’s event will be an Italian sub-eating contest, presented in association with the Association of Independent Competitive Eaters. One qualifying event for the Quick Chek Original Toasted Italian Hero was held recently at a Quick Chek store in Bridgewater .  Upcoming events are slated for Fairview (June 23) and Hazlet (July 7), with the championship final scheduled for July 30th at the Quick Chek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning.For further information call toll free 800-HOT-AIR-9 (800-468-2479) or visit www.balloonfestival.com, where information will be updated regularly.