About Ravenna Balloon A-Fair
September 2024 marks the 45th year of the Balloon A-Fair Festival in Ravenna, Ohio. This festival was conceived by some enterprising individuals who believed Ravenna should celebrate one of the city's earliest industries, toy balloons manufactured at the Oak Rubber Company. These industrious citizens organized that first celebration and what began as a few small events has swelled into an exciting annual event with something for all age groups.
Over the years different themes have captured the essence of the festival. This year's theme will be Make Your Dreams Soar In 2024. Many events are centered on this theme, plus T-shirts, Sweatshirts, and BAF pins.
The Children's Parade kicks off this year's Balloon A-Fair on Thursday, September 19th at 6:30pm with several hundred children marching down Main Street, Ravenna. This is an exciting time for children, giving them an opportunity to dress-up, make floats, decorate their bikes, and be a part of the opening excitement. There will be goody bags, prizes, and a Magic Show.
The Mini-Marshal is chosen based upon parade themes school children write relating to the theme of the festival. This lucky child takes part in not only the Children's Parade on their very own float, but they also are in the Saturday morning grand parade.
Friday morning, September 20, at 7:00 a.m. the Community Breakfast honors businesses and citizens who have made a contribution and given support to the Balloon A-Fair over the years. Reservations are required two weeks prior to the event to attend.
Gates open at 5:30pm FRIDAY at SUNBEAU VALLEY FARM with live music, inflatables, food vendors, craft vendors, helicopter rides, beer vendors, and HOT AIR BALLOON NIGHT GLOW at dusk!
Saturday September 21st in beautiful downtown Ravenna, a spectacular 90-minute Grand Parade, will step off at promptly 9:00 a.m. from the East end of the city and follow the parade route through downtown - rain or shine. The All American Judges provide their selections for the awards. The awards are given to the parade units which best reflects the festival's theme.
The awards ceremony will take place on the Courthouse lawn following the parade. Anyone wishing to participate in the parade should call 330-296-FAIR to request an application.
After the Parade, the crowd can visit craft booths, displays and food concessions that will line the downtown area. Live entertainment will be performed on the East Stage, West Stage, and at Children's Alley. Children of all ages will enjoy Children's Alley with games and a variety of children's activities.
The festival will continue at SUNBEAU Valley Farm located at 3229 St. Rt. 59, one and a half miles from downtown Ravenna. General public entrance is located off of Brady Lake Road. Additional parking will be at the Brown Junior High School located at St Rte 59. At the farm there will be inflatables, live music, craft booths, food concession, business displays, JEEP show with a car crush, fireworks and more! Helicopter rides will be offered, for a fee on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, weather permitting.
A hot air balloon launch is scheduled at 5:30 p.m. It is a spectacular sight when these beautiful hot air balloons lift off. At dark, American Fireworks will put on an amazing fireworks display. Food and entertainment will continue on through the evening and the live entertainment will continue until 11:00 p.m.
On Sunday, September 22nd, the gates of SUNBEAU Valley Farm will open at 11:00 a.m. Live entertainment will take place throughout the day along with a car show. At 5:00 p.m., the final ascension of 14 Hot Air Balloons will take place and then 6 more will inflate for spectators to get up close and personal with.
ALL BALLOON LAUNCHES ARE WEATHER PERMITTING.
Finally, the Ravenna Balloon A-Fair is put to bed at the end of another successful year and we begin planning for the year 2025. Any questions can be answered by calling (330) 296-FAIR, or sending us an e-mail at email@example.com
Please no pets (working dogs only); bicycles, skates, skateboards are not permitted downtown Ravenna and SUNBEAU Valley Farm during the festival.
The Balloon A-Fair Festival is held rain or shine.
All hot-air balloon lift-offs are weather permitting.
Entrance fees are non-refundable.
Daily admission to SUNBEAU Valley Farm is $5.00 per person per day. Parking is $5 per car. Children 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult.