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Experiencing South Dakota from the air: Taking flight at the Fall River Hot Air Balloon Festival

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Hot Springs Area Chamber of Commerce
Fall River Hot Air Balloon Festival

This interview posted above is from SDPB's daily public-affairs show, In the Moment, hosted by Lori Walsh.

Aeronauts take to the skies this weekend above Hot Springs. The Fall River balloon festival is expected to draw thousands of hot air balloon enthusiasts from across the region. The festival has grown steadily since the first balloons took flight during the 2016 festival. Roughly 30 colorful balloons will rise across the landscape.

Tamie Shrum is a seasoned pilot and will serve as Balloonmeister at this year's event.

"South Dakota is probably one of the most beautiful places to fly," Says Shrum. "Hot Springs, as well as Custer, offers a wealth of wonderful flying so it's not as difficult as other areas."

Shrum says visitors can interact with the pilots and crew and learn more about the science and math necessary for lighter-than-air travel.

Balloons take off Saturday from Hot Springs Municipal Airport (weather permitting). You can schedule a ride on the Fall River Hot Air Balloon Festival website. You can also explore fun activities on the ground including food, music, vendors, and more.

Carl Norquist is a producer and writer for In the Moment. An EMMY-winning producer, Carl previously worked for KTIV News 4 in Sioux City, IA. Carl is a Minnesota native and graduate of Augustana University with majors in Art and English.
Lee Strubinger is SDPB’s Rapid City-based news and political reporter. A former reporter for Fort Lupton Press (CO) and Colorado Public Radio, Lee holds a master’s in public affairs reporting from the University of Illinois-Springfield.