ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Winds grounded the unofficial kickoff of the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta Friday morning although pilots still put on a good show for their young audiences.
Albuquerque Aloft gives students and their parents an up-close and personal look at the balloons as they prepare for launch from their schools.
More than 60 schools from around Albuquerque and Rio Rancho including Arroyo del Oso Elementary school took part, but unfortunately the winds kept the balloons tethered to the ground.
Still it was a great experience for students.
"The pilots that come out are always fantastic; they're really nice," Arroyo del Oso Principal Stephen Maresca told KRQE News 13. "They give lessons to our kids. They talk about the altitude. They talk about the weather. They demonstrate and explain everything
"It's instructional, and it's fun because it's one-on-one."
Even though weather is a big factor in Saturday morning's mass ascension, Balloon Fiesta officials are optimistic wind will drop to acceptable speeds for the launch.
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