We freely admit that we’re aviation nuts. But if you would have told us ten years ago that we’d own three aircraft and parts of another, we wouldn’t have believed you, especially if you said that three of the aircraft would be hot air balloons.
We basically started hot air ballooning because it was a cheaper way to fly than fixed-wing flying. We were infected with the ballooning bug after crewing for Don and Betty Warren, who were then the owners of Tango (our smallest balloon at 69,000 cu. ft.). Don taught Dean how to fly, and then we bought Tango from the Warrens. But soon Dean found out that Tango was too small to fly during Phoenix’s hot summers, so we bought Voyager (a 90,000 cu. ft. balloon).
In early 2005, Dean earned his commercial hot air balloon license, and we bought Happy Hour. With its primary colors, Happy Hour made the perfect banner-ready balloon. We had a lot of fun flying the Countrywide banners at various events before the housing market stalled…
We’ve flown at the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, Temecula Wine and Balloon Festival, Yuma, Gallup, Sedona, Prescott, and many other fun places.