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Balloon Flying Service of Oregon     |     PO Box 3305  Salem OR 97302     |     (503) 363-9799
June 13, 2010 (v)
Passengers: Denise & Phillip Puentes, Jordon Puentes, Tor & Brianna Southard

Today is what we call an “off site” flight. What that means is that we are launching off private property for a special reason. Instead of using one of our standard launch sites we have moved to the Puentes home and will use their yard to take off from. I call for us to get together close to sunrise so I can (hopefully) have light winds at the landing. We have a good “gang” this morning and they are on the balloon like “ants on a sugar pile”. I put the heat to Starship and we are standing so it is time for the passengers to get on board. After the safety briefing we are in the air and heading out to the south as forecasted. We have a great photo opportunity as we leave the yard, with good shot of the home place, Denise’s garden then the vineyard next to it. We also get a great view of the hilltop houses in the neighborhood. We are moving along at a comfortable pace and the family discovers homes on the flight path that they never knew were there. We even spot some carnival gear that is being stored out here. This is farm country and we can see crops in all four directions. There are also several nursery’s scatted in amongst the farms. Off in the distance is a little something that gets our attention. As it gets closer I see it is a powered parachute that is working its way toward us. It is considered an “experimental” aircraft and is restricted to the rural area to fly. Not much to the thing, a pilot, a frame to sit on, a gasoline engine with a propeller and of course a really big parachute. It is time to look for an LZ (landing zone) and we are drifting toward Jefferson so I should be able to find a spot there. Last night at my place Tim, one of my crew stopped by and said that Jefferson High would be a great spot for a LZ. Bingo he hit it on the head as I spot the School and we have a straight shot for it. Once I clear the power lines I drop a line and the boys “grass ski” us to a stop. We are on the field but it was more work than we figured as the surface wind picked up just as we hit the grass. The gang get the balloon collected up and the passengers gets the “sit” done. We get loaded up and head back to the house for the picnic.
I get the story started, the toast is done and the certificates are presented.

Denise: “Thank you for making our vow renewal such a special day. The experience will be unforgettable and etched in my memory forever.”
Brianna: “Thank you! It was a fantastic trip. The balloon was so beautiful, what a great day.”

A BIG thank you to today’s Crew (I can’t get in the air or back on the ground without’um)
Cecil, Jan, Tim, JR, Todd

Average Speed: 8.0 MPH
Distance Flown: 9.3 Miles

See the video of today’s Flight! NOTE: You will need Adobe Flash 9 to play this video
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