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Bristol Balloon Fiesta

There are few more magical sights than 150 hot-air balloons rising into the early morning skies over Bristol. There are also spectacular evening launches and fantastic night glows, but sunrises and balloons are the connoisseurs’ choice. The idea for the fiesta came in the early 1960s when Don Cameron came to Bristol as a young, newly qualified aeronautical engineer. At weekends he would go to the Bristol Gliding Club at Nympsfield and it was in the evening at the bar that many aeronautical exploits were planned In 1979 the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta launched. Now in its 36th year, the fiesta is the second largest hot-air ballooning gathering of its type in the world and one of the largest outdoor events in Europe – and, most importantly, it’s still free. The REM team has been involved in the event in a variety of roles for lots of those years. In 2012, REM was awarded a five-year contract covering all the elements of production, management and revenue generation. This arrangement leaves the pilots free to enjoy themselves and entertain the public. And yes – even after all these years – we still get excited when the balloons take off.

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