ASHLAND -- The 29th ½ Ashland BalloonFest Flyover has been canceled due to the weather, event planning committee's president Mindi White confirmed Saturday.
Seventeen hot air balloon pilots were set to fly overtop Ashland Saturday evening and Sunday morning, recognizing what would have been the 30th annual Ashland BalloonFest.
The traditional event was canceled earlier this year due to COVID-19 concerns, and the flyover scheduled in place of the in-person festivities typically held at Freer Field. Residents were encouraged to watch from their front yards as pilots took off from various locations in the city.
"We just felt with everything going on people needed something positive, and we wanted to give something positive back, but the weather doesn't look good," White said. "We're not going to be able to have it."
The committee will attempt to reschedule the flyover for another weekend.
"We're checking with the pilots, but that's to be determined," White said.
Pilots were expected to come from as far as South Carolina and Illinois for the occasion. These pilots were notified earlier of the poor weather forecast in an effort to prevent unnecessary travel.
Others like first-year pilot Michael Miller had already arrived for the occasion. Miller's balloon, called "Just a Dream," was spotted in the sky Friday morning during a test run. He had been to the Ashland BalloonFest many times, but this was his first year as a pilot.
Though the flyover is canceled, BalloonFest Spirit Week continues through Sunday on the Ashland BalloonFest’s Facebook page. The organizers of BalloonFest encourage people to share BalloonFest photos from previous years and their favorite memories for chances to win prizes.
The traditional Ashland BalloonFest will resume June 24 through 27, 2021 as the 30th annual event.