On Father’s Day weekend starting on Friday, June 18, 2020, we were privileged to watch and take photos of four Hot Air balloons taking flight at the Petit Jean Mountain Winthrop Rockefeller private airport within Arkansas’ Petit Jean State Park. All the Hot Air balloons and their crews came from the Fayetteville, Springdale and Bentonville, Arkansas, areas. The event was sponsored and promoted by Petit Jean Farmer’s Market located inside the park. In addition to the Hot Air balloons, helicopter rides were available for ticket holders during the weekend too. Here is our visual story of what we enjoyed that day.

The photos displayed in our gallery were taken Friday morning and evening. A 4 a.m. alarm started our day because we had to be there by 6 a.m. We live an hour away. Hot Air balloons require that early morning cool air and low wind speed.  We wanted to catch a sunset or golden hour photo shoot of the Hot Air balloons Friday evening also. The Hot Air balloonists blessed us with a tethered Hot Air balloon at Yesterday’s restaurant in Morrilton, Arkansas. 

This was our first Hot Air balloon photo shoot. The COVID-19 pandemic made it challenging to take photos. We (myself and my husband) shoot with Nikon. I shoot with the D750 and my husband shoots with D600. Since it was going to be difficult to get close to the balloons, we relied on our Nikkor 28-300mm F/3.5-5.6 Zoom lenses on both cameras.

There are 308 photos in the slideshow, so we ask for patience as the web page with a slideshow load. We realize that’s a lot of photos, but the intent is to tell our story about the events from that day. The idea is to show the various stages from assembly to liftoff of each Hot Air balloon. Since there are two photographers taking photos, we each have our version of the story. It is our hope that viewers gain an opportunity to experience what we did watching the entire story unfold from two different perspectives.

The Hot Air balloons have plans to return for a weekend starting October 30, 2020. I look forward to another opportunity to get up close and personal photos this next time.

Click on any photo to start the slideshow and press the Esc key on your keyboard to return to the page. Do not hover your mouse over the photo during the slideshow because it will disappear. Click on the “play” button located above the photos to start a slideshow. Click on the arrows located above and, on each side of the photos, to view photos individually. I hope you enjoy the photos.