Taking to the Sky

By Tamara Evans | 

The "Balloons, Tunes and BBQ" event starts Sept. 7 at the Bowling Green Airport, so you're sure to see plenty of balloons flying around town this weekend.

WBKO's Tamara Evans took a ride of her own with an instructor.

Mark Fritze has been flying hot air balloons for years.

"Licensed since 1993, but I was involved with it about 10 years prior to it," Fritze said.

The Tallahassee resident even met his wife on a balloon ride. They started going to balloon races and one thing led to the next.

"It was just so magical that I stood on the ground and said, 'Oka, I'm going to do this,'" he admitted.

Fritze said flying a balloon actually isn't that hard.

"Hard? No! A little bit of bookwork and a lot of just getting out here and practicing and playing," he explained.

And setting up one? He made it look simple. In no time he had the balloon filled with air and off the ground.

"How high would you say we are right now?"

"Almost 2,000 feet. I didn't want to tell you that because I knew you were a little nervous," Fritze admitted.

Of course, Fritze wasn't scared at all.

"I've been above ground level. I've been eight miles high, 6600 ft. Above sea level, 8400 ft. I think was my altitude!" he said.

Still the height or flight doesn't scare Fritze.

And just getting others involved is what he says is the best part.

"It's just gold in my pocket everytime we land in a field and have the kids roll out the balloon. It's a tremendously fun sport!" Fritze exclaimed.

As for the "Balloons, Tunes and BBQ" event, it's going on Sept. 7 and all weekend long at the Bowling Green Airport and various news, weather and sports people will be manning a tent there too.

To see the schedule, click on the following link:

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