News & Updates

Inside the Basket - Matt Guthrie, Balloon Fiesta Board of Directors President

April 28, 2021

Matt Guthrie is the President of the Balloon Fiesta Board of Directors. In this month’s Inside the Basket, Matt shares his favorite Balloon Fiesta memory, how he became involved with Ba…


Inside the Basket - Lynn Tillery, Balloon Fiesta Navigator

March 24, 2021

Lynn Tillery is a Launch Director at Balloon Fiesta who has been involved with the event since 1982. In this month’s Inside the Basket, she walks us through a typical Balloon Fiesta day…


Inside the Basket - Bill Bussey, Balloon Fiesta Pilot

February 23, 2021

Bill Bussey is an award-winning, Balloon Fiesta pilot, who has been involved with the event since 1977. In this month’s Inside the Basket, Bill delves into his ballooning background, of…


Inside the Basket - Jennifer Schurman, Balloon Fiesta RV and Navigator Manager

January 20, 2021

Balloon Fiesta’s RV and Navigator Manager, Jennifer Schurman helps create a memorable experience for RV guests and Balloon Fiesta volunteers during the event. In this month’s Insi…


Inside the Basket - Barry Conley, Balloon Fiesta Navigator

December 16, 2020

Barry Conley has been a Balloon Fiesta Navigator for 30 years. Though he started with a variety of procurement roles, he now helps the news media experience the magic of Balloon Fiesta, as par…


Inside the Basket - Paula Craner, Balloon Fiesta Navigator

November 12, 2020

Paula Craner is a Balloon Fiesta Navigator that helps answer guest questions at the Balloon Fiesta front desk. In this month’s Inside the Basket, Paula shares insight to frequently aske…


Inside the Basket - Blair Morrison, Balloon Fiesta Navigator

October 26, 2020

Blair Morrison became involved with Balloon Fiesta during his time working with a local news television station and eventually transitioned to becoming a Balloon Fiesta Navigator. He now has v…


Inside the Basket - Keith Takach, Balloon Fiesta pilot

September 17, 2020

Keith Takach is a Balloon Fiesta pilot who first started competing in ballooning events in 2004. Now, Keith competes regularly because he loves the challenge of precision flying. In this mont…


Inside the Basket - Ursula Richards, Balloon Fiesta pilot, Navigator and pin collector

August 18, 2020

Ursula Richards wears many hats during Balloon Fiesta. She pilots a special shape balloon during the event, is a team lead for the Balloon Fiesta Trolley team and is an avid Balloon Fiesta pin…


Inside the Basket - Michelle Healy, Balloon Fiesta Chief Launch Director

July 14, 2020

As a Balloon Fiesta Launch Director, Michelle Healy helps balloons safely take flight. In this month’s Inside the Basket, Michelle shares more about how pilots are cleared for takeoff an…


Inside the Basket - Nancy Abruzzo, Balloon Fiesta Welcome Committee International Pilots Team Leader

May 27, 2020

Nancy Abruzzo is a Balloon Fiesta Navigator who helps create a seamless event for first-time Balloon Fiesta pilots. She has also created a Balloon Fiesta-based children’s book that bring…


Inside the Basket - Kimberleigh Gavin and Paul Gavin, Balloon Fiesta Shirt Artists

April 28, 2020

Kimberleigh and Paul Gavin are the two artists who have created the design for the 2020 Balloon Fiesta retro tee-shirts. Their design features balloons, both the real and imaginary, that illus…


Inside the Basket - Damian Duran-Arias, Balloon Fiesta Assistant Field Manager

March 26, 2020

Damian Duran-Arias is Balloon Fiesta’s Assistant Field Manager. In this role, he prepares year-round to ensure that Balloon Fiesta Park is ready for the launch of 500+ balloons and the a…


Inside the Basket - Henry Rosenbaum, Balloon Fiesta Balloonmeister

February 25, 2020

As Balloonmeister, Henry Rosenbaum works to keep pilots and Balloon Fiesta guests safe. He is involved in coordinating the flight operations of each day’s event-filled sessions during Ba…


Inside the Basket - Pat Young, Balloon Fiesta Deputy Director of Public Safety

January 21, 2020

Pat Young is Balloon Fiesta’s Deputy Director of Public Safety. For the nine days of the Balloon Fiesta, he works with the rest of the public safety team to keep guests from around the w…


Inside the Basket - Brenna Moore, Balloon Fiesta Navigator

December 11, 2019

Brenna Moore is a member of Balloon Fiesta’s media committee, is a navigator for the media tent and works with Visit Albuquerque. In this month’s Inside the Basket, take a look at…


Inside the Basket - Dennis Christiansen, Balloon Fiesta Transportation Manager

November 19, 2019

Dennis Christiansen is Balloon Fiesta’s Transportation Manager. He works with several local and state entities to help get guests to and from the event. In this month’s Inside the…


Inside the Basket - Braylea Fisher, Balloon Fiesta Guest

October 23, 2019

Braylea Fisher was a a second-time guest at the 2019 Balloon Fiesta. And, with some Balloon Fiesta experience under her belt, she brought a first-time attendee to experience the wonder and awe…


Inside the Basket - J.J. Mancini, First-year Balloon Fiesta pilot

September 16, 2019

J.J. Mancini will experience his first Balloon Fiesta as a pilot this year. Becoming a pilot and participating in Balloon Fiesta is something that he has looked forward to for quite some time.…


Inside the Basket - Allen Tetreault, Balloon Fiesta Public Safety Director

August 22, 2019

As the Director of Public Safety for Balloon Fiesta, Allen Tetreault works to keep guests safe at the event. His duties range from being involved with the first aid clinic on the field, to co…


Inside the Basket - Daniel Killen, Official Balloon Fiesta Serigraph Poster Artist

July 17, 2019

Daniel Killen is the artist of the 2019 Official Balloon Fiesta Serigraph Poster. He is also an illustrator at the Chuck Jones Gallery, which owns the rights to many of the loveable Looney Tun…


Inside the Basket - Lt. Zak Cottrell, APD

June 28, 2019

Lieutenant Zak Cottrell of the Albuquerque Police Department (APD) oversees the direction of guests traveling to and from Balloon Fiesta Park. In this month’s Inside the Basket, learn m…


Inside the Basket - Jonathan Abdalla, Chasers' Club

May 24, 2019

Jonathan Abdalla has been involved with Balloon Fiesta for many years. Since 1988, he has been involved with everything from designing pins to greeting guests. In this month’s Inside th…


Inside the Basket - Jeff Rowe, Kiwanis Treasurer

April 25, 2019

Jeff Rowe is the Kiwanis Club of Albuquerquepast president and the current treasurer. The Kiwanis Club works the admission gates at Balloon Fiesta. In this month’s Inside the Basket, l…


Inside the Basket - Erica Hahn, Balloon Fiesta Concessions & Executive Assistant

March 29, 2019

Erica Hahn oversees a variety of areas at Balloon Fiesta, including concessions and Artisans. This month’s Inside the Basket explores her role within the event, and some of her favorite…