ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta brings in around 800,000 people each year and businesses see a big boost in revenue. Hundreds of thousands of people head to Albuquerque each year to experience the magic that is Balloon Fiesta.
New Nuevo owners Arlene Espinoza-Armijo and David Stroue are about to experience what it can do for their business for the first time.
“We started talking to our neighbors who experienced Balloon Fiesta in Old Town before, and they’ve kinda braced us on what to expect and how busy it gets,” said Stroue.
According to Balloon Fiesta officials, last year more than $203 million was brought into the state. “During the nine days of Fiesta, people come into Albuquerque for the event, but they spend their time exploring Albuquerque, as well as exploring the state of New Mexico,” said Balloon Fiesta spokesperson, Tom Garrity.
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Stroue and Espinoza-Armijo are prepping for the extra foot traffic in Old Town, stocking up on all of the local goods they sell, which range from clothing and books to candles and green chile treats.
“We’ve been working with new makers to bring them in, so we can kinda highlight New Mexico and some of our traditions and cultures,” said Stroue.
“We’re just ordering with anticipation of lots of people coming down here and loving what we have to offer,” said Espinoza-Armijo.
While overstocking can be a risk for small businesses, it’s a risk they are willing to take. “We know that our guests have a great impact and a needed impact on businesses and small businesses around the state,” said Garrity.
“When we are profitable, then we are able to do more with our makers, and when we’re able to do more with our makers, then we are able to do more in the community,” said Espinoza-Armijo.
Espinoza-Armijo and Stroue say each day of Fiesta, they will feature a different local artisan on their patio.