Battle Creek Field of Flight Air Show and Balloon Festival --- July 1 - 5, 2015

Battle Creek Field of Flight Air Show and Balloon Festival -
July 1 - 5, 2015

Since 1980 Behnke has been directly/indirectly involved in bringing the City of Battle Creek together for the annual Balloon Festival. The employees and family members of the Behnke organizations enjoy viewing and experiencing the beauty in everything the Field of Flight and the Balloon Festival has to offer. Keep up the great work and soar to new heights this year!

Mesmerizing Balloon Illumes

Balloon Illume - Photo by John KosakAs dusk falls over W.K. Kellogg Airport, some MAGICAL ILLUMINATIONS begin. During our "Balloon Illumes" the launch field will be lit up with the glowing burners of over 20 Hot-Air Balloons. This "picture-perfect" site, is something that you won't want to miss and will become one of your favorite family memories forever.

The Balloon Illumes also incorporate some audience participation. You will be asked to say "Twinkle" or "Light 'Em Up". When you say "Twinkle", the pilots will light their burners in spurts, causing them to twinkle. When you say "Light Em Up", the flame will stay lit and the grounds will light up. The "Balloon Illumes" are a fan-favorite part of the Field of Flight, year after year.

There will be TWO Balloon Illumes during our 2015 Event.

  • July 2nd Evening
  • July 4th Evening (in between our Twilight & Night Air Shows)

You won't want to miss them.

Balloon Rides for Hire

Contact these Balloonists for Paid Passenger Rides in Battle Creek, Michigan and the surrounding areas. If they are participating in this year's hot-air balloon competition, they may not be available during the festival. NO PAID BALLOON RIDES ARE AVAILABLE DURING OUR EVENT/LAUNCHES! 

    Devon Cook 269-719-0333
    Phil Clinger 269-969-1328
    Tyler Jaques 269-274-0364
    Pat Rolfe 269-968-0368
    Woody Watson (Alto) 616-813-7251
    Chuck Walz (Munith) 517-596-2621
    Tom Bergeon (Mason) 517-676-1444
    Ron Groce (Mason) 517-676-9657
    Shawn Raya 248-969-4354
    Rick Kerber 269-790-6020
    Mike Nelson (Fortville) 317-627-5196
    Chris Smart (Huntington) 260-224-0251
  • OHIO
    Jim Birk (Defiance) 614-579-2970

Balloon Launch Weather Criteria

Weather conditions must be almost "ideal" in order for a Hot-Air Balloon Launch to take place. If there is any sign of a potentially non-safe flight, then the launch will be CANCELED. Experienced Balloon Pilot, Jim Birk, serves as our Balloon Meister. He is very trusted in the ballooning world and he makes the decision on if a safe flight can be executed or not. In addition, launches are also at pilots discretion. Here is some weather information on ballooning flights:

  • Winds
  • Winds Aloft
  • Visibility
  • Rain
  • Fronts
  • Thunderstorms

Read more: Balloon Launch Weather Criteria

Final Balloon Competition Standings

2014 Hot-Air Balloon Competition Final Standings

  1. John Petrehn - Kodachrome BalloonJohnny Petrehn Racer XJohnny Petrehn 7185 Kodachrome
  2. Joe Heartsill 6559
  3. Chase Donner 6546
  4. Jeff Pestun 6373
  5. Shawn Raya 6372
  6. Joe Zvada 6304
  7. Yudai Fujita 6301
  8. AJ Nels 6210
  9. Chris Smart 6198
  10. Dominic Bareford 5616
  11. Jason Adams 5395
  12. Brandon Heavin 5326
  13. Larry Coan 5257
  14. Steve Mitchell 4999
  15. Jeremy Rubin 4978

Congratulations and Thank You to all who participated!

2013 Hot-Air Balloon Competition Final Standings

1 Joe ZVADA, TX 7950Joe Zvada - McAllen TX - Super ChickenJoe Zvada - McAllen TX - Super Chicken Super Chicken
2 Paul PETREHN, MI 7860
3 Joe HEARTSILL, TX 7730
4 Gary HEAVIN, TX 7590
5 Nick DONNER, KY 7550
6 Chris SMART, IN 7540
7 Shawn RAYA, MI 7510
8 John PETREHN, KS 7470
9 Harold CLIVER, TX 7260
10 Phil CLINGER, MI 7050
11 Jeff PESTUN, MI 6950
12 Yudai FUJITA, JPN 6880
13 Chuck WALZ, MI 6860
14 Rhett HEARTSILL, TX 6800
15 Brandon HEAVIN, TX 6680

 Congratulations and Thank You to all who participated!

2012 Hot-Air Balloon Competition Final Standings

John Petrehn - #1 2012John Pethren - Winner 2012 Hot-Air Balloon Competiition - Racer X Balloon1 John PETREHN, KS 11178 Racer X
2 Paul PETREHN, MI 10319
3 Rhett HEARTSILL, TX 10039
4 Nick DONNER, KY 9885
5 Joe HEARTSILL, TX 9660
6 Chris SMART, IN 9546
7 Robert GONZALES, TX 9501
8 Shawn RAYA, MI 8989
9 Joe ZVADA, TX 8715
10 Gary HEAVIN, TX 8711
11 Jeff PESTUN, MI 8559
12 Robert WATSON, MI 8368
13 Andy BAIRD, MI 8321
14 Jason ADAMS, ONT 8226
15 Rick KERBER, MI 8007

Congratulations and Thank You to all who participated!

Nick Donner - Nike Victory Hot-Air Balloon - #1 in 2011 Nick Donner - 2011 Hot-Air Balloon Champion

2011 Hot-Air Balloon Competition Final Standings

1. Nick Donner IL 6704 Nike Victory
2. Chase Donner GA 6500
3. Shawn Raya MI 6386
4. Tom Roush TN 6364
5. Larry Coan MI 6272
6. Joe Heartsill TX 6182
7. Paul Petrehn MI 6126
8. Phil Clinger MI 5602
9. Jeff Pestun MI 5557
10. Roy Smith TN 5421
11. Joe Zvada OH 5331
12. Rhett Heartsill TX 5215
13. Bret Christian IA 5172
14. David Troutman KY 4943
15. Jeff Sweet NC 4897

Congratulations and Thank You to all who participated!

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Applebee’s Battle Creek Wall featuring the BC Field of Flight Air Show and Balloon Festival - Photo by Lisa Burns

“A special Thank you to Applebee’s in Battle Creek for featuring the BC Field of Flight Air Show and Balloon Festival on their wall!  What an amazing job and tributeThank you for the support!

PARTNERS - Pending

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