Friday fun: Balloon rides over Carmel

June 21, 2013
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Marching bands, fried Snickers and balloon rides are on tap for the 25th annual CarmelFest, a July tradition that draws an estimated 50,000 celebrants downtown.

“It’s a big deal,” said Jeff Worrell, who chairs the volunteer committee that organizes what he called the largest single event in Carmel.

The festivities kick off the afternoon of July 3 and continue through a no-holds-barred fireworks show on Independence Day.

New this year: $5 rides in one of Re/Max Real Estate’s fleet of hot-air balloons, which will be tethered in the so-called “North Zone” in Carmel’s Civic Square on opening day. The 40-foot-high zenith should provide a decent view of nearby City Center and other recent development.

Other highlights include a July 4 parade—with enough goodies tossed at the crowd to qualify as a “mini Mardi Gras,” Worrell said—entertainment on four stages and “every kind of fried food you can imagine.”

Worrell said parade-goers stake out their favorite vantage point as much as two days early, marking their territory with chairs and blankets that stay curbside (undisturbed) until the big event.

This year’s grand marshals are former Mayor Dottie Hancock and ex-Chamber of Commerce chief Nancy Blondin, who started CarmelFest 25 years ago.

The event’s $200,000-plus budget is covered mostly by sponsorships (Rotary Club of Carmel is the presenting sponsor) and vendor fees, but organizers also sell so-called “spark” buttons to raise additional funds.

“It’s important that individuals have the opportunity to support their own festival,” said Worrell, who introduced the community fundraising effort in 1994.

The committee hopes to sell 3,500 buttons this year. Prices are $3 for a simple pin and $6 for a lighted one.

CarmelFest veterans, help us newbies out: What is your favorite part of the celebration?

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this blog

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT