SW Louisiana Hot Air Balloon Festival July 19-20

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LAKE CHARLES, La. (AP) — A hot air balloon festival is coming to southwest Louisiana, with the first night being an alcohol-free “Church Night” and a beer festival the second afternoon.

The festival is scheduled July 19 and 20 at Chennault International Airport in Lake Charles.

Airport Executive Director Kevin Melton tells The American Press it’s an educational opportunity, since human flight began with balloons.

Pat Harwell holds a world distance record for balloon flight without a basket. He will be overseeing balloon operations at the festival.

Tickets are $15, $25 for both days. Kids age 14 or under get in free.

There’s a balloon glow and a fireworks display each night.

An afternoon beer tasting adds $35 to Saturday’s admission fee.

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