ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – In fourteen days, hundreds of balloons will once again be launching from Balloon Fiesta Park, but some things will look a little different because of COVID-19. Saturday morning during a press conference, city leaders discussed what locals and tourists can expect at this year’s event. While most of it will look like it has in years past, there will be some changes.

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“We’ve spread out a lot of our most iconic balloons,” said Sam Parks, the Director of Operations of the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. “We’re encouraging people to not gather around the east side of the field,” said Parks.

Due to travel restrictions, the Balloon Fiesta will see fewer international balloons. Parks says some balloons will be shipped here and flown by American pilots.

Masks will be required in all indoor areas, and crowded areas on the field, indoor dining will not be available. Proof of vaccination is not required at Balloon Fiesta, but organizers say they’re going to continue monitoring the public health orders, and CDC recommendations, and will be announcing any changes in weeks to come.

Masks will also be required if you plan on taking the park and ride this year. There will also be hand sanitizing stations set up throughout the park.