For Hometown News
For the first time ever, a blimp will be one of the featured attractions at the New Smyrna Beach Balloon & Sky Fest.
The April 5-7 event also features other firsts, but the appearance of Snoopy One -- one of the MetLife blimps -- will top the charts. People love hot-air balloons and people love blimps, and attendees will see both at Balloon & Sky Fest.
Snoopy One will depart the Houston area on April 1 headed for New Smyrna Beach, and if all goes well the huge lighter-than-air ship will touch down here by Thursday, April 4 -- just in time to welcome attendees to Sky Fest at 2 p.m. Friday, April 5.
But even if Snoopy 1 encounters headwinds on that long trek east, blimp pilot Charlie Smith assures everyone he will guide Snoopy 1 into New Smyrna Beach for an appearance at Balloon & Sky Fest, even if it's after the gates swing open.
The 130-foot-long helium-filled blimp comes with a crew of 13, and can reach speeds of 40 mph, although at Balloon & Sky Fest Snoopy One will be at rest on its mooring mast for all to see. Bring your camera and get ready to enjoy the spectacle of a blimp at the airport all weekend during this year's event.
General admission to the 2013 New Smyrna Beach Balloon & Sky Fest is $5, and veterans with ID and children younger than 12 get in free. Parking is free, too. For more information and an event schedule, visit balloonandskyfest.com.