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Art & Entertainment

July 31, 2019

2019 QuickChek Festival of Ballooning Huge Success

The 37th Annual QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning

We have been attending the NJ QuickCheck Festival of Ballooning for a number of years now and we look forward to it each year. 

You can see some of our past posts of the festival here: 2015 Day 12015 Day 22017 •  2018 

It amazes me how lucky they have been over the years, that the weather continues to bless this festival.  There was only one exception two years ago, when they had to close the festival early one day because of a severe thunderstorm. 

Of course the Hot Air Balloons need a calm wind and a clear sky to fly.  This year, although temps reached into the high 90’s, it was one of the best days for riding in a balloon or being a spectator.  This is why the ascensions are at 6:30 AM and 6:30 PM, because of calm skies and nice breezes to take the Balloons where they have to go.

Hot Air Balloons-In-Flight

Each year my wife and I and our service dog Georgie attend the Festival of Ballooning. 

Service Dogs Allowed

Service Dogs Allowed

It is estimated that over 100,000 people attended the festival each year, but with all the land at Soldberg Airport it is maneageble.  The ground are also packed with excited, happy families getting ready to enjoy not only the balloons, but the festival activities too.

Come Early


It is always a good idea to travel early and avoid heavy traffic.  The morning mass ascensions start at 6:30 AM on all three days.  They are beautiful, and the weather is also cooler earlier in the day. We did notice on Sunday when we left that hundreds of cars were coming for the 6:30 PM evening ascensions . 

We had watched the ascensions on Saturday evening and we were so tired and hot on Sunday that we left early.  We can never seem to make it for the early morning ascensions which start at 6:30 AM, but if you live close to the airport or are an early riser it is worth seeing it in the morning.

We used to start out early but never had the strength to go all day, but locals can do this and it is worth the time to see all the ascensions if you can.

Balloon Ascensions:
Friday:      6:30 pm
Saturday:  6:30 am and 6:30 pm
Sunday:    6:30 am and 6:30 pm  
Ticket Prices
The cost to attend is inexpensive compared to all the amusement parks and other events you might attend.  If you buy your tickets early you can get an Early Bird rate and buy them at any QuickChek store or online. This year tickets on the Early Bird were only $24 for an adult until June 23rd, $30 by June 24th and $35 at the gate. Children are $10, $12 and $15.

From Their Website

The 37th Annual QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning: Home 2019


The QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning is the largest summertime hot air balloon and music festival in North America and is the premiere family entertainment attraction in New Jersey.  It holds the dual distinction of being a recipient of The New Jersey Governor’s Award for Best Special Event, as well as being designated, for the 6th time, as a Top 100 Festival in North America by the American Bus Association.
Held annually at Solberg Airport in Readington, NJ, the festival truly has something for everyone!  From twice daily mass ascensions of up to 100 special shape and sport hot air balloons, to headlining concerts, non-stop family entertainment, hundreds of crafters and vendors, great food, fireworks, a balloon glow, and more, the festival is jam-packed with stuff to do.

Participating Companies-FREE Stuff

Loads of Stuff-Bags Full

There were so many participating companies and booths many distributing FREE samples of their companies products. Kind brought in what seemed to be their entire team to distribute full sized Kind Bars to the attendees. 

Dr Pepper

At the end of the two days at the festival, we literally had hundreds of candy bars, potato chips, and so many other goodies that we are now stocked until next years festival.  You can see many of the exhbitors in our photo gallery.

We Love Kind


FREE Health Cigna Screening Exhibit

My wife and I signed up for our Cigna took a drop of blood, weighed me in and measured around my waist.  I found out I had shrunk 2″ from my 5’8″ height, that my good cholesterol was better than ideal, she knew I had to be on a cholestorol drug :-), everything else in the test was wonderful, except my waist circumference, got to get rid of the love handles.

Cigna Health Screening

Cigna Health Screening


Mars Candy Co.-Combos

Entertainment – Music – Food

Beach Boys


Food Options

 In our photo gallery you will see that the crowds come not only for the Hot Air Balloons, but also for the entertainment and food.  There was a magic show a demonstration of skill and danger on trampolines and of course many food options.  Quickchek has a massive tent serving all sorts of food and drink with tables on the outside with umbrellas for their guests.


Of course there is their concert series this year Saturday evening it was the Band Perry on  Sunday afternoon it was the Beach Boys.  Those that wanted seats could purchase the VIP tickets, the pilots and the crew of the balloons were given access to the side of the theater and watched through the chain link fence.  Others were able to listen to the music that was loud enough to hear from a great distance.



For the Children

Rides At Festival

As you can see in our photos there were rides for the children, including a ride on a real pony, many huge inflatible rides and so much more.  Everyone had a wonderful time and we recommend if you are in driving distance from the Soldberg Airport in Readington, NJ next year to plan ahead and spend the time enjoying the best event for the summer in New Jersey.

Our Flickr Photo Gallery

There are 226 photos · and 11 video clips in our Flickr Gallery below and even download those you like.

Note: These are for your use only and not to be used commercially without our permission or our copyright notice. 

QuickChek Festival of Ballooning 2019
July 24-26 2020

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About the Author

Len Rapoport
Len Rapoport
IPA Editor-In-Chief, ID: 1000 • I am an internationally published photographer and the founder of International Press Association. As president and editor-in-chief, my duties at IPA are extensive. For over 40 years I have written articles, had my photos published in millions of publications, record album covers, books, and in the digital media. I was senior marketing and sales executive for major corporations, including my own and as a corporate communications consultant. I have taught photography and formed IPA 20 years ago. I currently work from my home office and continue to actively cover media events in addition to all of my other IPA and IMPress responsibilities.


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