The Chesapeake Bay Balloon Festival moves to a fantastic new location in Harford County, MD. The festival builds on the six-year tradition of the festival which has attracted 12,000-15,000 attendees to the mid-shore from 7 countries and 37 different states. The event will support launching American Farm Foundation, Inc. whose mission is to promote food from local family farms, redefine “responsibly grown” to better represent what’s most important to consumers, all while helping family farmers be more profitable so they can keep feeding America.
The site at Cedar Lane is a spacious park with both onsite and nearby offsite parking, near the intersection of MD Rt. 136 and Rt. 543, minutes from I-95. Unlike past years, there are plenty of hotel options in the area.
The atmosphere is fun, relaxed, and enjoyable whether attending with friends or the family. An anticipated 30 hot air balloons provide tethered rides, fly-aways, and night glows. Attendees enjoy beer from local breweries and wineries. Entertainers ranging from Americana, rock, and country perform on the main stage. A children’s area offers games, face painting, and inflatables. Food trucks serve oysters on the half, smoothies, local farm cheese, wood fired pizza, pulled pork, and more. New this year, a farm market will offer value added products from area family farms and help families plan their fall activities by meeting Harford’s ag tourism farmers in their booth spaces.
In the “Artists Village” artists and crafters, working in every medium, interact with buyers looking to shop for unique hand-crafted gifts. Valencia Glass will have a full glass blowing studio set up. Attendees bring pop-up tents, folding chairs and picnic blankets to create their own gathering space. A VIP Hospitality tent experience and catering are available for entertaining corporate guests.
The 1400 square mile radius of Harford County counts 1,216,198 people vs. the same radius of the previous location at 154,299 people, a whopping 87% increase. Harford has 10% more residents aged 18-65 and an almost $20,000 higher median household income. According to the 2022 Maryland Tourism Marketing Plan, “road trips” are growing in market share with “thematic itineraries and curated activities attracting road trip visitors.” With Harford’s focus on ag and sports tourism, and incredible support from Visit Harford, 2023 is sure to be the biggest and best year of the balloon festival.
Most spectators spend three hours at the balloon festival event, mesmerized by balloons, interacting with exhibitors and vendors, participating in kids fun zone, sampling food and enjoying entertainment.
Visit the website to learn about how we can help your business grow via Vendor, Sponsor/Advertising, and Hospitality opportunities as we help celebrate Harford’s 250th Anniversary.
Chesapeake Bay Balloon Festival is August 4th, 5th and 6th, 2023!
All ballooning activities including static display, tethered rides and balloon flights are weather-dependent. The decision to inflate hot air balloons is made just prior to the scheduled ballooning activity. Please note that due to the popularity of our festival, our admissions booths will close when we reach maximum capacity. This is a decision out of our control and made by local law enforcement. Tickets are non-refundable.