Four of the five Soldiers from the 508th MP Co out of the Teaneck, NJ, Armory pose for pics before the event began. Soon all were in the field where the beautiful balloons were getting ready for launch!
The Bicycle Balloon Race at the Warren County, NJ, Farmers' Fair & Balloon Festival July 31, 6:30pm
For more info contact: John P Quirke, Esq Archer & Grainer PC 1 State Rt 12, Suite 201 Flemington, NJ 08822 Ph: 908-788-9700 firstname.lastname@example.org
Holy crow, what a great event! And our some of supporters and Soldiers even participated! Here's how it worked:
Bicyclists signed up for the race. They paid a fee. (These fees will be donated to Adopt-a-Soldier Platoon!) There will be a balloonist for each bicyclist. Actually the number of balloons will limit the number of bicyclists. There are usually twice as many bicyclists wanting to register than there are numbers of balloons. There will be at least 20 balloons, that means at least 20 teams.
The balloonists volunteer their balloons and then take on passengers to help defray their expenses. Passengers usually pay approximately $200 to go on the ride with the bicyclists. This year, Brian and Susan Rich came up from Virginia to participate. They run a great charity named "A Grateful Nation," which has supported AaSP by supporting our units AND helping supply us with candy and popcorn from several suppliers, including Just Born, the manufacturers of Mike & Ikes and Peeps.
As John Quirke, one of the folks running the event, put it, "have you ever been to a mass launch (balloons)? It's a spectacular sight!" And it was a breathtaking and fantastic site to behold for sure. There was even a betrothal balloon ride in the mix, all which made it quite exciting!
Five Soldiers from the 508th MP Co were able to attend and go up in the balloons. Thanks to the event and to the Balloon Pilots for making that happen.
Special thanks to John Quirke and Noelani Diemicke for their fantastic help to make this a great charity event for Adopt-a-Soldier Platoon!