Only two of these first five pictures were taken from a
few feet away. The rest were more than 50 yards, me
standing on a shady hill, and pointing camera toward the
blue shirt and the yellow bermudas. Defintely a good
zoom on my Canon PowerShot. Some I blew up - they are
those fuzzier ones. And shot from the ground to the sky
came out well also. Some that Ken took from the sky to
the ground will really give an idea of how high - they went
up to 3,000 feet according to the pilot.
Mr. Connie's Birthday Balloon Ride from Mrs. Connie
He checks out of hospital in the a.m. and is up in a balloon by 7 p.m.
Ken, friends since high school, and children, Cindy and Dave, enjoy
the 57 minute flight with him.
Ken's Commentary:
I was treated to an amazing visual experience when Mrs. Connie paid to let me accompany Mr. Connie on his birthday present hot air
balloon birthday ride. 12 of us spent an hour 3000 feet up in a hot air balloon basket viewing a gorgeous, variegated green, verdant Iowa
landscape. We simultaneously saw curving crop lines, ponds, and groves of trees among many other visual delights while gliding serenely
through the warm and calm air.

Since I have a fear of heights I was expecting to have to deal with a great deal of anxiety when gazing down thousands of feet while
peering over the edge of the basket. Thankfully, the only jitters I experienced was worrying about dropping my brand new I phone 3000

We were all first timers so we were all riveted on our descent wondering how the pilot was going to land a balloon which cannot be steered
in a tiny little mutually pre-selected spot by the pilot and chase team from 3000 feet. Well, he did exactly that. The chase team was right
there to grab the basket immediately upon landing to keep it from tipping and being dragged. We were impressed and relieved.
I like to call him the Purple People Eater. He's got
hooves and at least one ear. ? Your guess as good as
mine. Balloon crew on the ground.
To left is Mrs. Connie, Dave, Candy
with her back to us, Connie and Ken.
Same group below of the soon to be
passengers. And far right is their
Mrs. Connie was down at the launch area taking
pictures while I took them from the 50 yd
position. I do not have any of her shots but hope
to get some.
Left Dave is climbing in, right is Mr.
Connie doing same. Left below all are
in, see Ken w/blue shirt & sun glasses.
A good picture of Dave, Chelsea and Patty while waiting for the winds to be
good to take off. Probably had a 45 minute wait before they launched.s
Above, Chelsea and Patty. I do not know if names are spelled correctly. What a good looking mother and
Following are some of my favorite
balloons. This bronze one turned out to
be a monkey,  and sun glasses one, did
not fly - just had them ready to fly.
Some of the several balloons taking off.
The one to left they called peg leg - he is
left. Kind of a parrot pirate maybe.
Ken did well with his new iPhone taking
pictures with a camera he had never
The power that makes the thing go up.
Three commercial balloons went up - all
could hold 14.