The 4th annual Waterford Hot Air Balloon Festival kicked off Friday afternoon on the grounds of Evergreen Elementary School, and our cameras were there to capture some of the atmosphere of this great family event for the YouTube video above. The weather was beautiful, and the Lake Michigan winds gradually died down, permitting a number of hot air balloons to launch from the field. Then, sunset kicked off Friday’s “Evening Glow” activities, with a group of inflated balloons on the ground igniting their propane burners in unison to beautiful effect.

A pair of helicopters flew the adventurous on $40 sorties out of the parking lot, out over the surrounding landscape, and back again. Booth vendors offered a variety of food and beverage options, as well as arts and crafts, gifts and novelties. Games and activities for the kids included the Waterford Fire & Rescue Department’s “Survive Alive House,” teaching youngsters how to safely exit a burning building.

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