Excited children and their parents lined up at Bellevue Park for free hot air balloon rides on Wednesday morning.
The RE/MAX Balloon stopped in the Sault from July 9-11 (weather permitting) as part of its Northern Ontario tour.
Johnathan Mogg, Office Manager and Sales Rep for RE/MAX Sault Ste. Marie, told SaultOnline that this year’s turnout has been the best one yet.
“(Tuesday) night, we had longer lines than we’ve had anywhere in Ontario for this year,” he said, explaining that from 6p.m. until dark there was a consistent line.
“We’re quite proud of the turnout – Sault Ste. Marie came out strong.”
RE/MAX Hot Air Balloon Pilot Keith Ferguson has been operating these balloons sine 2000.
“This is a way to support all of the offices in Northern Ontario,” he told SaultOnline. So far, the tour has taken them to Kirkland Lake, Sudbury, Kenora, Thunder Bay, and the Sault. The next stop is in North Bay, with a final stop in Peterborough, making their way back to Toronto, where the tour started.
“It’s great; the public loves it,” he said, talking about the reception the balloon rides get. “They get a tethered air balloon ride at 25 feet and get to see the parks and the views from (that height).”
Mogg said he thinks this event is a great way to give back to the community and thank them for their support over the years.
The RE/MAX Balloon was first seen by spectators of the Albuquerque Hot Air Balloon Festival in 1978. Now, there are approximately 100 RE/MAX Balloons engaged in promotional programs in North America.