Five Balloon Fiesta themes selected as finalists

Albuquerque balloon fiesta

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Out of more than 850 entries, Balloon Fiesta announced Friday, it has narrowed the theme for next year’s fiesta to five. But what about the other 845 suggestions that didn’t make the cut? You may be surprised why some didn’t fly.

“Let’s use the names that are from our guests that are original and I think we have five names that do that,” says Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta Communications Director Tom Garrity.

Those five theme finalists are “Poetry in Motion”, “Here We Glow Again”, “Where Dreams Take Flight”, “Got Lift?”, and “Pushing the Envelope”.

This year, the fiesta received more than 850 submissions and a team narrowed it down, running the themes by other fiesta organizers.

So, what about the ones that didn’t make it?

Garrity says there were a lot of submissions for themes the fiesta has already used like, 1993’s “Magic in the Air”, 1997’s “Paint the Sky” and 2007’s “Chasing Rainbows”.

Plus, this year, 25 people submitted the same theme, a popular song from 1967 by The Fifth Dimension called “Up, Up and Away”. That idea can’t be used because it’s copyrighted.

“At that point, we need to find out who the copyright attorney is, get permission and almost always there’s probably royalties that go along with that as well, and we think that our fans are pretty creative and so, we wanted to get their thoughts,” explains Garrity.

Voting for next year’s theme kicks off Friday and ends on the 18th.

This year’s contest winner will receive a prize pack including a balloon ride for two. This year’s theme, “Spirit of the Wind”, was submitted by someone in Uganda. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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