Kelsey Brassard (left) and Cindy Brassard (right) of the North Okanagan Hot Air Balloon Society meet Peter Kaz, marketing manager of the Village Green Hotel, in preparation for the Society’s fundraiser and balloon glow Oct. 19. The night will begin with training balloon ground crew volunteers in the hotel’s parking lot before transitioning into the party at The Green Pub. (Parker Crook/Morning Star)

Fundraiser keeps North Okanagan Hot Air Balloon Society in the air

Event kicks off at 5 p.m. in Village Green Hotel parking lot

What once began as a Vernon Winter Carnival tradition has morphed into something more.

The hot air balloon show’s departure from Carnival to form the North Okanagan Hot Air Balloon Society in 2016 opened the doors for further opportunities, secretary Cindy Brassard said. However, with those possibilities come other complications, primarily that of funding.

To bring further awareness of the Society’s departure from the Carnival to the forefront and raise money for the annual event in the process, the North Okanagan Hot Air Balloon Society and the Village Green Hotel are hosting a fundraiser Oct. 19.

“A lot of people still think we’re part of the Carnival,” Brassard said, adding that some falsely assume when they donate to the Carnival Society a portion of the proceeds goes towards the hot air balloon event.

Brassard said, apart from funding from key sponsors Great West Equipment, Lordco, Vernon Tourism and support from media sponsors SunFM and The Village Green Hotel, the Society’s funds are generated primarily through members’ efforts.

“People don’t understand they’re not getting their funds from an organization. That’s why we wanted to put this on,” said Peter Kaz, Village Green Hotel marketing manager. “I just found out about this. That’s why I jumped on it.”

Related: Society’s selfie contest takes flight

Related: Hot air balloon pilot lives lifelong dream

Related: Video – soaring into the new year

Related: Balloon volunteers needed

According to Brassard, it costs the Society an estimated $1,500 per balloon to run the annual event that marks the Vernon Winter Carnival calendar. This year, the Society anticipates a total of 15 balloons to partake in the festivities for the cost of about $22,500.

The Society fundraiser kicks off at 5 p.m. in the Village Green Hotel parking lot with a training session for potential future ground crew volunteers before transitioning into a balloon glow at 6 p.m. featuring two hot air balloons. The party starts inside The Green Pub, attached to the hotel, at 7 p.m. with a $20 burger and beer special and a silent auction, the prizes for which include a hot air balloon ride for two during the Carnival event in February, air conditioning and water heater upgrades and more.

Tim Reardon of The Young’Uns fame will take the stage with his rock and dance band #POUNDSIGN at 9 p.m. after the auction winners are announced.

North Okanagan Hot Air Balloon Society memberships will be available for $10.

“Just come, support us and enjoy yourself,” Brassard smiled. “I would like to see Vernon become a destination for hot air balloons.”


@VernonNews
parker.crook@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Popular Similkameen winery grows

Corcelettes winery outside Keremeos has bought more land and is expanding

Water samples good, Hedley awaits drinking water A-OK

Water woes in Hedley had some residents questioning the communication plan of the HID earlier this week

Nature Trust of B.C. purchases property in South Okanagan

Parcel will be added to White Lake biodiversity ranch

‘I thought I was dead as soon as I saw the gun’

Keremeos gas station attendant tells story about man with gun coming to store

Another successful year for Cram the Cruiser Keremeos

Volunteers held another Cram the Cruiser event in Keremeos on Monday.

Omar Khadr wants changes to bail conditions

‘My life is held in suspension’, says the former Guantanamo Bay detainee

Sissons scores OT winner as Predators beat Canucks 4-3

VIDEO: Vancouver battles back to earn single point in Nashville

Lions announce seven members of coaching staff not coming back for 2019

The operational moves come two days after the Lions announced DeVone Claybrooks as the team’s new head coach

Missing man last seen in Shuswap

Red Deer RCMP would like public’s help locating elderly man with dementia last observed in Sicamous

$12K awarded to atheist family who oppose Christmas, Hanukkah in B.C. classroom

Gary Mangel,May Yasue said holidays, Remembrance Day and Valentine’s Day not appropriate in preschool

Aboriginal poet faces backlash for calling out NHL-themed totem poles

Rebecca Thomas says she received backlash for asking a drugstore chain to remove NHL merchandise

No plans yet for free WiFi on BC Transit buses

BC Transit says they are monitoring the roll-out of free WiFi on Translink vehicles

Some Kotex tampons recalled in Canada and U.S.

In some cases, tampon users sought medical attention “to remove tampon pieces left in the body.”

Sex-assault squad investigated eight incidents at Toronto all-boys’ school

The interim president of a Roman Catholic all-boys school rocked by student-on-student abuse allegations said the football program was cancelled for next year.

Most Read