Learning first-hand how to operate and put together a hot air balloon

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MITCHELL, Neb. Front-line workers, representatives from local businesses and the tourism department woke up early this morning to receive first-hand knowledge on Ballooning 101.

Residents are shown how to put a balloon and basket together, attach the balloon and what it takes to fly. (Brian Sherrod, KNEP)

They were taught how to put a balloon and basket together, attach the balloon and what it takes to fly.

This information is provided so residents know how to speak about ballooning for Nationals this upcoming summer.

Once you are in the air, you cannot actually steer the hot air balloon.
It goes along with the wind currents.

Mike and Colleen Johnson with High Plains Hot Air Balloon Company works alongside the FAA to see the direction the winds are going.

With flying, the winds cannot be stronger than eight miles an hour, no thunderstorms, cannot be too cold or foggy.

“Mainly its safety,” said Colleen Johnson. “We really want people to understand the safety of the balloon, the propane and the fan when you are inflating. It helps to know this information if you are possibly helping a pilot for Nationals.”

They are always looking for volunteers.

You can go on their website at www.theoldwestballoonfest.com to sign up.