V.I.P. Lift Off! – An Elevated Festival Experience!
The VIP Experience is August 17, 2024. This package includes:
VIP ticket price TBA
What to Expect
Against the backdrop of a Smoky Mountain Sunset, the balloons begin to inflate as soon as weather permits. Balloon inflation is all weather dependent. The festival is rain or shine.
The Balloons Will Not Launch Free…. This Is a Tethered Balloon Event.
Prepaid parking only at the festival grounds you can link to come. The parking fee is $30 and includes 2 admission tickets to the festival. Entry tickets are $5. VIP tickets include free parking. Local business will offer parking in the area on the day of the festival. No shuttles are provided.
Our four-legged friends are not discouraged from attending the GSM Hot Air Balloon Festival, but we understand that the Balloons can be frightening and noisy much in the same way a fireworks show creates stress for our furry pets. All pets must be leashed and poop bags are required.
Activities for All Ages
Our festival is a family fun event with lots of activities for all ages to keep everyone happy and having fun!
Food Truck & Concessions
Great local food trucks will be on hand to serve whatever craving you may have.
Relax with a cold beer while taking in the beauty of the festival.
Nothing better on a hot summer’s day! Thanks to Cherokee Distributing.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- What time will parking be available? 3:00 pm
- Is there handicap parking? No. Our volunteer team will do their best to get you as close as possible to the entrance. The festival grounds are rugged fields and difficult to maneuver. Be prepared to walk.
- Is outside food or beverage allowed? No.
- How can you purchase tethered ride tickets? The tickets are sold online on this website. Some tethered rides may be offered on the day of the event. Please be prepared to wait, hot-air balloons are very sensitive to weather conditions. We will do our best to get you on your tethered ride as soon as possible.
- Are there shuttles to get me around inside the festival? No. Due to crowds of pedestrians it is unsafe for us to provide shuttles. We are located in the mountains and the festival grounds are moderately hilly.
- What does tethered ride group ABCD mean? The plan is to have the ticket rides in order. If you have an “A” ticket we will try to start the rides at 4:00, B start at 5:00 and so on. This is all very weather dependent so the times can change. Please bring a chair and be prepared to wait on Mother Nature.
- How much is a tethered ride ticket? $25 per person. Presold on line and some will be available during the event. (price may change)
- Can my 2 year old child ride in the tethered balloon with me? No. Ages 8+ are allowed to ride in balloons.
- Are kids free to the festival? Yes, kids 10 and under are free to attend the festival.
- What time do the tethered rides begin? Rides will begin around 4:00-9:00pm eastern – Again very weather dependent.
- How long will the rides be? 10 minutes and very weather dependent.
- How high will the balloons go? 30 feet
- Will I get to pick the balloon I ride in? No.
- What happens if the weather is bad? Balloons will be ready to inflate if weather allows. The festival is rain or shine event even if the balloons can’t inflate we will still have fun!
- Are my parking passes or entry fee refundable? No. This is a rain or shine event.
- Are the tickets refundable? No, the tickets are non-refundable, except for tethered ride tickets.
- Can I bring a chair? Yes. There are some bleachers provided but please bring your own easy to carry foldable chair.
- Can I bring an easy up canopy? No. This would block the view of the balloons for others. Umbrellas are encouraged but please be considerate of those behind you.
- Will there be a laser light show? No.
- Will there be a balloon glow? Yes. Time is uncertain due to weather conditions.
- Will there be parking other than the festival grounds? Yes. Local businesses offer off-site parking. There will be no shuttles available from these parking lots. We do not know what their fees are. We support them offering parking and happy they are helping attendees.
- When is the VIP experience? The VIP experience is the same day and time as the festival. These pre-bought tickets include: Catered meal, swag, tethered ride, drinks and music.
- Are dogs allowed? Yes, all pets must be leashed and poop bags are required. Please be aware that the noise from the balloons may be scary to our four legged friends.
All information is subject to change.