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Balloons over Paradise

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balloons 13Name:  Fifth Annual Balloons over Paradise

Dates:  April 2 & 3, 2016

Hours:  Starting at 6:00 a.m. each day, when balloons 02festival-goers can stroll among the balloons as they inflate for a mass ascension into the sky. Vivid multi-hued balloons will kick off each morning with an illuminated light show to orchestral music.

Place:  Seminole Casino in Immokalee, which is located in the heart of Southwest Florida on Highway 846, five blocks south of Highway 29 balloons 04between Naples and Miami.

Description: Balloons over Paradise is a hot air balloon festival that features an art showcase organized by Boulderbrook Productions, more than 60 custom hot air balloons, tethered balloon rides, live music by award-winning performers, food vendors, children’s activities, carnival games, balloons 05acrobatic kite demonstrations, a classic car show, demonstrations by agility dogs, a polo performance, an equestrian drill team performance and more. Specialty balloons include Sugar Bear, Ella “phant” and a flying globe. Children can join in on the fun with storytelling, bounce houses and a climbing wall. balloons 03Food vendors will be on-hand with Amish donuts, kettle corn, crepes and great grilled hamburgers, hot dogs and sausage. Attendees will also enjoy funnel cakes, cotton candy and other treats. Last year, the event attracted more than 15,000 people.

Admission:  Admission is free to all ages for all parts of the festival, including the music concerts

Parking:  Free.

Organizer: Boulderbrook Productions

Director: Richard P. Sullivan, a native of Wellesley, Massachusetts. Not only is Sullivan on site throughout the festival, he knows just about every artist at every show that Boulderbrook produces throughout the year. “I want to know them and know their work. I’ll go to someone’s house just to talk to them about their art.” So conversant is Sullivan with each artist’s work, that he’s been known to expound upon an artist’s work to potential collector’s while spelling them in their booth.

Crowd Shot 01Website: http://www.boulderbrook.net/the-naples-masters-art-festival-artist.html.

Related Festivals. In addition to Naples Masters Winter Art Festival in January, Boulderbrook Productions also produces the following festivals in southwest Florida:

  • Sanibel Masters Art Festival at the Community House on Sanibel Island (November 27 & 28, 2015)
  • balloons 18Seminole Casino Craft Fest in November
  • Sanibel SCA Fine Arts Festival (January 15 & 16, 2016)
  • Naples Masters Winter Art Festival (January 23 & 24, 2016)
  • Sarasota Masters Art Festival (January 30 & 31, 2016)
  • Naples Lakes Masters Art Festival (February 13 & 14, 2016)
  • Pompano Beach Masters (March 5 & 6, 2016)
  • balloons 15Boca Grande Art and Wine Festival (March 12 & 13, 2016)
  • Peace River National Art Festival (March 19 & 20, 2016)
  • Naples Downtown Dog Gone Art Festival (April, 2016)

Fast Facts:

  • In the ’80s, Festival Director Richard Sullivan spent time in film and television production. For years, he hobnobbed with everyone from Steven balloons 01Tyler of Aerosmith to James Taylor. “I not only got to the meet them, I had lunch with them,” he says.His work in music videos then opened the door to filming high-end commercials for products including Reebok. He traveled around the globe, from Milan to Brazil, filming famous athletes.
  • Visiting his parents’ home in Naples, he met a girl and decided to stay permanently. Needing something to occupy his time, so he approached the newly-opened von Liebig Art Center about raising funds to build a dark room on the premises. His success in that fundraising effort prompted balloons 17The von Liebig board of directors to seek his assistance with its most famous event, the Naples National Art Festival, a two-day event that attracts high-caliber artists from far and wide.
  • When Sullivan left nearly seven years later, Naples National had gone from being rated the 11th to the fifth best festival in the nation by Sunshine Artist Magazine.
  • Today, Sullivan produces art festivals throughout Florida and as far north as balloons 16Nashville, Tennessee through his own business, Boulderbrook Productions, named after the brook in which he caught frogs near his Massachusetts childhood home.
  • Seminole Casino in Immokalee is Southwest Florida’s #1 destination “because the action never stops and the fun never ends.” With over 1,200 of the industry’s newest slots, 34 live table games and a WPT poker room, you are sure to balloons 19find action that suits your style. Click here to take a 360-degree virtual tour of the casino.
  • Headlining last year’s festival was rocker Eddie Money , who was joined by The Buckinghams who’s break-up song, “Kind of Drag,” became a million-selling pop chart-topper in the 1960s.
  • For more information, please visit http://seminoleimmokaleecasino.com/event/balloons-over-paradise.

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