MESQUITE, Nev. – The grounds at the CasaBlanca Resort and Casino were filled with spectators and the sky was filled with colorful balloons as the 12th annual Mesquite Hot-Air Balloon Festival soared into Mesquite, Nevada, over the weekend.

From Friday through Sunday, hot-air balloons from all over the United States entered the skies over Mesquite, with several entries also hailing from Canada, and thousands of spectators turned out to watch the colorful giants and their occupants soar through the heavens.

“These balloons are absolutely beautiful, and it really brings people together and just enjoying their time,” said Christian Adderton, dual property assistant general manager for the CasaBlanca Resort and Casino and the Virgin River Hotel & Casino, which are the primary sponsors of the festival.

This year’s festival featured 35 colorful hot-air balloons showcasing a variety of motifs. The event kicked off Friday and included balloon launches in the mornings and night glows at night as visitors of all ages turned out to watch and cheer the balloons and their operators.

“Our furthest balloon that traveled here was from Philadelphia,” Adderton said, “so I think it speaks to the festival itself and also the hospitality the CasaBlanca offers to our pilots that come down. You put all that together and you have a great festival like this.”

Mark Whiting, of Lone Tree, Colorado, is the owner/operator of a circus-themed balloon known as “Big Top.” Whiting and his crew travel to balloon festivals all over the western U.S., but he said the Mesquite festival is one of his favorites.

“I love this event,” he said.

Whiting first came to Mesquite to participate in the balloon fest, and he and his crew have returned several times since then. Whiting and his wife have come to enjoy the locale so much that they’re now looking for a home in the St. George area.

“That’s how much we love the area and the people,” he said.

The Mesquite Hot-Air Balloon Festival concluded Sunday.

Photo Gallery

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2024, all rights reserved.