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OWA is the spot for high-flying adventure during the 20th Annual Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival

April 23, 2024

Foley, Ala.—Celebrating its 20th year of flying, the Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival will take sail at OWA Parks & Resort for the 4th year in a row. The festival will take place on May 2 through 4 and promises high-flying excitement and tons of family fun, showcasing over 50-plus balloons from across the nation.

Join us for a weekend packed with family fun! In addition to the expansive amenities of OWA, including its 23-ride amusement park, indoor water park and outdoor wave pool, as well as a great selection of restaurants and retail shopping, there will be tons of entertainment during this action filled weekend. Guests can enjoy arts and crafts vendors, children’s activities, as well as live entertainment at the OWA Amphitheater.  This year offers a great lineup of performers throughout the weekend including the Tri-City Saviors, The Funky Lampshades, Erin Michael Taylor, Southbound 75, Ryan Dyer, Hannah Anders, and Drive!Drive!. If you’re looking for a bit more adventure, grab a ticket for a hot air balloon tethered ride and see the sights as you rise 30-40 ft in the air, a special experience for fun seekers of all ages. Guests can also get the chance to meet the pilot and climb inside a hot air balloon (All rides are wind and weather dependent and require a ticket). Plus, as part of the 20th anniversary, the Disc-Connected K9 Frisbee Dog Show is back with eight shows throughout the weekend.

The fun kicks off on Thursday, May 2 at 4 p.m. with activities and entertainment,  culminating with a Balloon Glow at 7:30 p.m.  The festival will open to the public at 11 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. Morning flights are scheduled for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday between 6 a.m. – 8 a.m., before the festival opens. Tune in to WHEP Radio Baldwin 92.5 FM for live broadcasts of flight plans, including launch sites and flight paths, so you can have the best chance to catch them soaring through the skies!

Festival admission is free, with select activities available for an additional charge. The Gulf Coast Hot Air Balloon Festival at OWA Parks & Resort benefits the South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce. It was named the 2021 Event of the Year by the Alabama Tourism Department.

For more information and a full schedule of events, visit visitowa.com/balloon-fest/ or gulfcoastballoonfestival.com/.




About OWA Parks & Resort: Award-winning OWA Parks & Resort in Coastal Alabama is owned and operated by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians.  OWA’s name is derived from a Creek word for “big water,” and the tropical theme of the 520-acre property was inspired by the Gulf of Mexico, minutes away via the Foley Beach Express.

At the heart of OWA is Tropic Falls, which includes a 23-ride theme park and the region’s largest indoor water park—bigger than a football field and covered by a convertible roof.  Adjacent to the indoor water park and connected by a retractable wall is Big Water Bay, a 30,000 sq. ft. wave pool and Coastal Curl wave simulator.  Just outside the ticketed areas is Downtown OWA. This pedestrian-only streetscape was inspired by Southern small towns and features numerous options for dining, shopping, and entertainment.  The destination resort offers a full calendar of events, from Downtown OWA’s own Mardi Gras Parade to the annual Christmas tree lighting with fireworks and snowfall.

For on-site accommodations, relax at OWA’s own award-winning TownePlace Suites by Marriott.  And for the RV traveler, Tropic Hideaway is a luxury RV resort that has everything you want, starting with its location at OWA Parks and Resort, just minutes from the Alabama beaches off the Foley Beach Express. The sites are all extra wide and feature a full complement of Wi-Fi and hook ups. Premium locations and pull-through sites are available.  OWA is the place in Coastal Alabama to thrill, then chill.