There's a handful of special events that happen in Maine every year that draw huge crowds. For nearly three decades, one of those events has been the annual Great Falls Balloon Festival in Lewiston. But this year, it won't be happening.

Shared on Facebook by Great Falls Balloon Festival, organizers have announced the cancellation of the event, citing what they are calling unforeseen challenges and circumstances. The festival was set to celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2024.

What Happened to the Balloon Festival?

Without shedding a ton of detail, the balloon festival listen a pair of reasons behind the cancellation. Organizers say logistical issues – which could include everything from balloon launch sites to the timing and arrival of vendors – was a major reason in the decision to pull the plug.

Lewiston, Maine, 2022
Ray Tan
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Additionally, safety concerns were another sticking point. With the unimaginable tragedy that struck Lewiston last October, ensuring safety at the balloon festival is a top priority, and that challenge may have become overwhelming.

What's Next for the Balloon Festival?

While saddened by the cancellation of the balloon festival in 2024, organizers remain committed to bring the annual tradition back in 2025. However, it is likely to look and sound different.

Canva (via Great Falls Balloon Festival on Facebook)
Canva (via Great Falls Balloon Festival on Facebook)
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Within their social media post, the Great Falls Balloon Festival promised a rebranding and reorganization. That could mean anything from a name change to a venue change, perhaps even expanding the sites where the balloon festival rides, games, and vendors are located.

Another Hit for Lewiston

As the Lewiston community continues to heal from last October's tragedy, an event like the annual balloon festival was important. From a business standpoint, the event draws thousands upon thousands of people into the city and helps the coffers of small businesses.

But the event has also stood as a community pillar for years. There's little doubt the organizers understand that, and their efforts to return the festival to glory in 2025 will be magnified.


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