Ethan was SO excited for the Forest Park Balloon Glow last Friday. For a week he told everyone who would listen about how incredible the hot air balloons would be—though he’s never actually seen one up close.
He asked Stu to get home early so we could go. And even though I probably shouldn’t have, I packed dinner and we all jumped in the car to head over as early as possible.
Our friends had secured the perfect spot to watch all the prep…when we arrived the balloons were just giant lengths of fabric strewn across a huge grassy field. Then suddenly, they were all rising into the air.
I can’t believe I’m doing the classic “belly hold” in the above pic…totally unintentional and ridiculously dorky. Like you can’t tell I’m pregnant.
Ethan could barely talk, he was so intensely watching the action. Bright colors + giant flames = tons of fun.
Though the field was mobbed once those ropes came down, we couldn’t help but feel as if we were in a bubble of magical-ness. The darker the sky grew, the more magnificent those flames became.
Almost ten years ago (could I feel any older saying that?), Stu and I had this great apartment in the Central West End, just steps from Forest Park. We were either just about to get married or just barely married, can’t quite remember. But anyhew, we somehow ended up walking over to the Balloon Glow, having no clue what to expect. It was held on the Pavillion hill, not a giant field, and there were maybe 10 balloons. It wasn’t very busy, we just meandered around and talked to the pilots. While it was completely unplanned and not really all that big of a deal, it is still on my list of my favorite St. Louis events.
Back to today.
I’m not sure what was keeping us away all these years, I guess we just never made the effort to go. Ten years just flew by. This event is now HUGE. There must have been 40 balloons. And a mini-carnival. And a billion people. And it’s still top on my list of favorite STL traditions.
It won’t be 10 years before we come back.
I swear I only held Ethan like this for two minutes, it was a shot I just couldn’t resist trying to be a part of. The evening included very little walking and was a very relaxed. We figured it couldn’t hurt to get out a little bit…I’m already missing out on what seems like everything.
The event was too cool to miss. I had to see that crazy-amazed look on Ethan’s face.
Did you go to the glow? What about the race lift-off the next day?