Inaugural Mesquite Hot Air Balloon Festival scheduled Jan. 28-29 80 miles north of Las Vegas

Share Article

In the city of firsts, the colorful two-day event is expected to have balloonists and fans talking for years to come.

The inaugural Mesquite Hot Air Balloon Festival is scheduled Jan. 28-29 about 80 miles north of Las Vegas.

I think people are going to remember this one in Mesquite for years to come.

Southern Nevadans will get the chance to enjoy the majestic world of hot air balloons Jan. 28-29 when the inaugural Mesquite Hot Air Balloon Festival is presented.

Spearheaded by balloon meister Gayle McCoy of Elko, the event is expected to draw about 24 participants. A 22-year resident of the city in northeastern Nevada, McCoy literally eats, sleeps and breaths the world of hot air balloons.

Let it never be questioned that the energetic McCoy is enthusiastic about the color of hot air balloon festivals. Self-proclaimed as a “utility guy” at Barrick Bald Mountains gold mine in Elko, Nev., McCoy is certain that yet another “first” in Mesquite is about to become one of the city’s favorite events.

“It’s a passion for me,” said McCoy adding that a long-running hot air balloon festival in North Las Vegas ceased about 6-7 years ago. “I think people are going to remember this one in Mesquite for years to come.”

McCoy explained that his enthusiasm of hot air balloon festivals started about 32 year ago when his wife, Martha, worked for a newspaper in Riverton, Wyo. Her boss attended a hot air balloon festival in Albuquerque, N.M. before arriving home to tell anyone who would listen what a great event he had just attended.

“From there, it’s been up, up and away,” laughs the colorful McCoy, who found the energetic and progressive minds of Mesquite eager to create yet another balloon festival. His own balloon, Misbehavin, will be part of the gathering in Mesquite.

Contestants include eight from Nevada; nine from Utah (Park City, Murray, Alpine, West Jordan, St. George, Salt Lake City and Salina); six from California (Simi Valley); and one from Arizona.

The festival in Mesquite is sponsored by Mesquite Gaming along with AmeriGas of St. George, Utah. All events related to the festival will be held at the CasaBlanca Resort or the CasaBlanca Golf Course. An in depth schedule of events includes an assortment of gatherings. Balloons will launch each day beginning at about 6:30 a.m. from the CasaBlanca Golf Course.

In the afternoon, tethered rides will be available beginning at 3 p.m. at the CasaBlanca Resort Parking lot weather permitting.

Equally as entertaining will be a balloon glow on the grounds of the CasaBlanca Resort on the evening of Jan. 28. An awards presentation Jan. 29 will wrap up festivities at 10 a.m. at the CasaBlanca Golf Club.

Further information can be found by visiting or or by calling CasaBlanca Sporting Event Manager Christian Adderson at 888-711-4653, ext. 51; or Balloon Meister Gayle McCoy, 775-397-2494.


Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Christian Adderson
Mesquite Gaming
888-711-4653 ext. 51
Email >

Mike Henle
Visit website