Balloonist take to the sky for fun rides after race cancellation

VALLEY PARK, MO (KTVI) – Weather may have cancelled the Great Forest Park Balloon Race, but a handful of hot air balloon pilots launched a fun flight from dry ground in west county Saturday night.

"We don't want to let anyone down" said pilot Ralph.  "Safety is always our concern, but right now the weather cleared and it's perfectly safe and it's good for flying" he said.

The pilots launched from Buder Park in Valley Park heading east over St. Louis.  As word spread that balloons would be launching, dozens of people showed up at Buder Park.

"We like going down to the race, but it's neat to see them up close in personal so we were in the area so we decided to swing by and check them out" said Jim Kerber.

Great Forest Park Balloon Race organizers say while Mother Nature won this year, they're already looking forward to next year's festival.