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Local's Guide to the Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic

Several hot air balloons on the grass in Ann Morrison park. CapEd vintage truck and blue canopy in foreground of hot air balloons.
Published on Tuesday, August 30, 2022
Estimated read time: minutes
Content last updated on Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Whether you've visited the park before to watch the balloons take flight, or this is your first time - we've got you covered. Our staff has compiled some tips and tricks for you to get the most out of the Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic starting August 30th and ending September 9th.

1. Parking and Park Access

The balloon festival takes place in Ann Morrison Park each year. While there is parking inside the park, it is very limited and not available each day. It is recommended to find public parking in lots or on the street outside of the park. There are many entrances to Ann Morrison for you to easily walk to from wherever you find parking. Boise is also a strong biking community making it easy to meet up with friends and ride along the green belt. Lock up your bikes then walk into the park to find the best viewing spot!

2. What to Wear

The balloon festival takes place during sunrise and mornings will be cold in the park! We suggest wearing light layers that you can easily take off if you start to warm up. Don't forget to think about your shoe choice too! The grass will be dewy and wet, nobody likes wet socks!

3. Pets in the Park

This is a family friendly event and we want all members of the family to enjoy, however, we don't recommend bringing your dog to the balloon festival. It is very busy and the hot air balloons make noises that will likely scare your furry friend. Dog Island Dog Park will be open and the balloons don't take off near the dog park, but as they hover over, it could still spook your pup.

4. Where to Watch

Thankfully there are multiple days you can check out all the balloons. If you're feeling up to it, we recommend watching the balloons take off from the ground in Ann Morrison Park one day and then getting a higher vantage point another day for a whole different view! If you're viewing inside the park, don't be afraid to get close to the balloons to see how it all works! The pilots and crew are really friendly but be mindful and give them space to work.

If you want to see the balloons from a higher perspective, a popular viewing spot is on Crescent Rim. The street over looks the entire park! It is a residential area, so be respectful of home owners and their properties. The rim fills up quick with spectators so try to get there early! Other great viewing spots include the Boise Depot, Esther Simplot Park, Julia Davis Park and the foothills.

5. Make Your Own Traditions

For most of our staff this is a long-time family tradition and they enjoy making it an entire morning event. After you've watched all the balloons take flight and head out across Boise, choose a local restaurant to enjoy breakfast at! It is an early morning event and for most that means coffee is a must! You can certainly get your caffeine fix prior to the launches but you'll likely want your hands free to take lots of photos and videos.

6. Capture It!

Make sure your phone and camera are fully charged and have plenty of storage for some amazing photos. The Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic offers amazing colorful sights of fun-shaped hot air balloons complimented by a beautiful Boise sunrise each year. We would love to see what you capture! Tag us on social media @capedcu and we'll share it for everyone to see.

This is one of the best events that takes place in Boise, Idaho. This year will be one to remember! The CapEd team will be out in the park Wednesday for CapEd's Kids Day where kiddos can enjoy a tethered balloon ride. We will also be at the Nite Glow Friday night. This is something you definitely won't want to miss! Come out and see us! We'd love to share this event with you all as well as offer support to you and your family on your financial journeys. For more details about the event visit The Spirit of Boise website.