By SHWETHA SUNDARRAJAN
The 2017 annual Wildwood Balloon Glow is bigger and better than ever with not one or two, but five hot air balloons lighting up the night sky.
Presented by the Wildwood Business Association, the event takes place from 6-9 p.m. on Saturday, July 22 on the Wildwood campus of St. Louis Community College, 2645 Generations Ave.
The new location represents the event’s growth and popularity – bringing together area residents, businesses and community organizations for a night of fun and fellowship, with all proceeds from the event supporting the Wildwood Family YMCA.
“We presented a check of $2,500 to the YMCA during our Balloon Glow last year, and this year, we’re aiming to raise around $5,000 to $6,000,” explained Mike Sedlak, president of the Wildwood Business Association.
Funds raised help local families who are unable to pay for YMCA programs.
The balloons, which are sponsored in part by Re/Max One, US Inspect, Cherry Hills Family Eye Care and Endeavor Capital Mortgage, will start rising as dusk begins to fall. The view is not to be missed, with five four-story hot air balloons glowing in the night.
Prior to the main attraction, bluegrass band The Missouri Rounders will perform.
As in year’s past, West Newsmagazine will be on-site handing out Mystery Money – in denominations from $1 to $20 – to the first 100 kids, age 10 and younger. The Mystery Money giveaway will be onstage at 6 p.m. The Bubble Bus also will entertain kids with a sea of bubbles.
A variety of business owners will have booths at the event to showcase their products and services. Guests are encouraged to visit the booths to learn more about the products and services offered by local businesses in the community.
Food and drink
Food and beverages will be available for purchase at the event from local purveyors including Callier’s Catering, Letty Lou’s Café, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Wildwood Pub & Grill, Doughboy’s Wood Fired Pizza, Wayno’s Mobile International Cuisine and WingNut.
Letty Lou’s Café and Wildwood Pub & Grill also will have alcoholic beverages for sale, including signature cocktails, beer and craft brews.
Admission and parking
While admission to the event is free, there is a $10 fee for parking at St. Louis Community College-Wildwood and at the Wildwood YMCA.
What to know before you go
Guests are encouraged to bring cash, as it may be the only form of payment accepted by some vendors, as well as blankets to sit on the lawn and insect repellent. Guests are asked not to bring pets. Firearms, weapons, tobacco and glass containers are prohibited.
The rain date for the Balloon Glow is Saturday, Aug. 5. Visit www.wildwoodba.org or visit the Wildwood Balloon Glow Facebook page to learn more.