Edmonton Balloon Club
25th Anniversary Celebration
Nov 21, 1998
at Strathcona Legion, Sherwood Park
Updated: June 18, 2002
Edmonton Balloon Club 1973 - 1998
Welcome to this special edition of POPTALK, a celebration
of 25 years of ballooning by the Edmonton Balloon Club. Yes, it has been 25 years from the
time a few individuals with a love for the sport got together and formed the club; to the
high times when there were 3 club balloons flying regularly with almost a hundred members;
and back to a small group of people who still care and are trying to keep the club going.
There have been some fun time, great flights, adventures,
many events, rough times, a large number of landowners and best of all, thousands of
bottles of champagne consumed. For many who have been part of the club and ballooning it
has been a terrific experience and a place where life long friendships have developed.
Some friendships have even developed into marrages between club members.
Ballooning is an adventure whether you are flying this
large, colorful and sometimes cantankerous bag of hot air, chasing down those roads trying
to keep up and figure out where this thing is going while answering a million questions
from kids and other drivers, to the landowners, (the majority are great but a few are
"interesting");. Time flies by too quickly and the adventure is over.
The club members who have kept this organization thriving
and open to anyone with an interest in participating have done a wonderful job on a shoe
string budget and thousands of hours of volunteer time. Members have gone on to help in
other balloon organizations and have left their footprint in the history of ballooning.
Lets talk about some of the people, remember the
good times and adventures the club has had and most of all, lets keep enjoying ballooning.
Dianne and Alex
Well, here we are, at the silver Anniversary of the
Edmonton Balloon Club. We have some, or a little more, silver on our tops as well.
I was looking over the PopTalk from the 10th
Anniversary. I was there, as were several of you. I joined the club that year. I had been
watching these beautiful balloons go over my house in Sherwood Park, and wondered what it
would be like to be "Up Close and Personal" to them. I looked through the Yellow
Pages, phoned a couple of places that said to call the Edmonton Balloon Club. I did and
was told a great way of getting introduced into ballooning was to be an observer for a
little balloon event Colorfast Cup. Well, fifteen years later, I still think that
they are beautiful (my personal opinion: No such thing as an ugly balloon but some just
dont look as good as others.); Crewing and the Edmonton Balloon Club are an
important part of my life. I have met many people and made some very close friends.
Over these past years, we have seen varying interest and
participation in ballooning. Those who are committed, stay committed in one form or
another, whether in active participation or within their own heart. We have gone from a
young club where fun, flying and fast times have made way for a gentler, more mature (?)
club with a little more emphasis on history, education as well as fun and flying.
Our home is now the Edmonton Aviation Heritage Centre,
which houses the Alberta Aviation Museum and also houses "Pop", our first
balloon. We are always looking for "Pop" stories. We have participated in
several aviation, therefore balloon, awareness events at the Heritage Centre, as well as
many school presentations throughout the area. Our main pilots for the last few years,
Alex and Marion, have done a remarkable job of flying, thank you, and we are pleased to
introduce Don Mclean to the ranks of Club Pilot (just a few more solo hours needed).
Ah, the future
always that uncertain time to plan
I hear that to fly you need crew; however, you need to fly
to attract crew. A Catch 22. We need more visibility and to educate the interested. In
this context, for the weekend of September 10, 11 & 12, 1999, I hope that we, the
Edmonton Balloon Community, can host the AFBS Alberta Championship
out of the
Municipal Airport. Quite a site, and for a night glow, quite a sight . Think about it,
besides all the hard work, what a lot of fun an event can be. And how beautiful the sky
becomes when its full of balloons.
November 1998 Issue: Published by Dianne Tomm-Lunty and
Alex Nagorski, with copies of material from the 1983 Poptalk and material researched from
all Poptalks published.
|Pat Richards (Shields)
||Charlie Littlewoods Daugher
||Charlie Littlewoods Son