Hundreds of thousands of feet and tires visited Balloon Fiesta Park for nine days straight.
“We prep it beforehand, and we take care of it after,” said Parks and Recreation Assistant Director Shay Armijo.
Unfortunately, it’s hard to be perfectly prepared for the weather.
“There is always the chance of rain in Albuquerque; it could be sunny today right now, and it will rain in an hour,” said Armijo.
Learning from a wet start for Fiesta in 2021, the Parks and Rec. Department made some changes this year to help.
“We make sure we have the tools and the people on-site, so we can repair any ruts that we find, and we made sure to have our irrigation turned off ahead of time,” said Armijo.
After days of rain, some areas on the field needed some extra care those last three days of Fiesta.
“We would barricade it off, so we would prevent vehicles from getting on it to cause more damage. It wasn’t necessarily for the people it’s not a solution that we can fix immediately especially knowing it’s going to rain continuously,” said Armijo.
As soon as that final Sunday crowd cleared out, crews got to work.
“What we’re actually doing is aerating; we are trying to pull plugs, so that we can get some of that water to drain down,” said Armijo. “We’ll be putting compost and sand mixture on top and then repairing any irrigation problems that we run into.”
Despite all that rain, the park is bouncing back.
“Because we were on site so often, and we were able to make repairs quickly, and cordon off sections, we were able to prevent a lot of damage from happening,” said Armijo.
Which is necessary for the quick turnaround at the park.
“We do have events that start at the end of October, and this is a park that has a high use so we do have a quick turnaround to make sure the park is ready to rock-n-roll,” said Armijo.
Now, they’ll take notes from this year into making next year even better.
“We learn every year something new,” said Armijo.