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BALLOON FEST DISASTER

Balloon Fest 2000 was wiped out by 13 inches of rain which caused a massive flow of mud which wreaked all sorts of havoc. Balloon Fest 2001 was held in the same location in Mansfield, but with many weather calamity protections. For 2002 the Balloon Fest was moved to the Midway Airport between Midlothian and Waxahachie. And once more Mother Nature decided to do some havoc wreaking. Friday was fine. Saturday  was fine. But sometime after midnight, early Sunday morning, an unexpected, unpredicted line of thunderstorm cells moved on the D/FW Metroplex from the west. The Weather Service issued Emergency Warnings. A few people managed to get to the Balloon Fest site as the storm reached its maximum fury. Winds were over 80MPH, which is Hurricane strength. 

Fort Worth Main Street Arts Festival | Canton First Mondays | Chisholm Trail Days | Scarborough Faire
Arlington 4th Parade | Granbury 4th Parade | General Granbury's Birthday | Cowgirl Parade | Peach Festival
Sweetwater Rattlesnake Roundup | Waxahachie Races | Ennis Polka Festival


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The Dallas Face Painters you see here were among the few to make it to the scene just as the disaster struck. They knew they couldn't save their tent, but tried to see what they could do for the Big White Tent. But they quickly realized it was not safe and returned to the safety of their vehicle. By morning the Dallas Face Painters were cheerily making the best of the situation. They lost a lot.

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This is all that remains of the pony corral we saw in the previous photos. 

wreck9.jpg (29937 bytes) Here we see that fan that was keeping the horses cool the day before.
wreck2.jpg (30112 bytes) The ponies, tethered to the fence as their humans struggle to clean up the mess.
wreck6.jpg (29559 bytes) Half the tent blown away, exposing all that was inside to the wind and rain.
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The Balloon Fest Manager managing part of the ongoing crisis.

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Another view of the ripped apart tent.

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You can see here the skies are still quite menacing. You can also see one of the few outhouses that did not take a ride in the wind.

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The Hillbilly Sisters seemed to have survived intact. But all that was around them was blown away.

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A view out of the torn tent, at the rubble, and the Confederate Air Force plane still on guard.

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Here we see the Balloon Fest Manager still crisis managing.

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More blown apart mess under a very angry sky.

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Vendors trying to sort through their scattered goods.

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Three dead outhouses and one more blown apart tent. You do not want to think about what happens when an outhouse blows over in the wind. 

That ends your look at this year's Balloon Fest weather disaster. 
Balloon Fest 2003 is scheduled to be a weather woe free festival...

Fort Worth Main Street Arts Festival | Canton First Mondays | Chisholm Trail Days  
  Scarborough Faire | Arlington 4th Parade | Granbury 4th Parade
General Granbury's Birthday
| Cowgirl Parade | Peach Festival
Sweetwater Rattlesnake Roundup | Waxahachie Races | Ennis Polka Festival

A Longhorn in Wildflowers at Lake Grapevine
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