Balloon pilot pavilion aimed to honor legend becomes year-round destination

balloon fiesta pavilion

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – It was built to honor a New Mexico legend and serve balloon pilots during Fiesta. But as it turns out, the new Sid Cutter Pilot’s Pavilion is also serving as a new year-round destination.

Less than a year after the groundbreaking, the 12,000 square foot Sid Cutter Pilot’s Pavilion sits near the field at Balloon Fiesta Park.

“This is a much nicer facility than putting them out in a tent,” said Susan Rice with Parks and Recreation for the City of Albuquerque.

This was the first year balloon pilots used the facility built specifically for them. It’s dedicated to the Balloon Fiesta legend, Sid Cutter. A sculpture out front honors Cutter, who founded the event in 1972.

“It really became kind of a destination point throughout the week,” said Paul Petrehn, Balloon Fiesta Event Director. He said pilots responded very well to the new facility this year.

But there are also plans for the rest of the year.

“We knew that if we built a quality facility that was attractive and that was reasonably priced for the community, it would be used, but this is so far beyond our expectations and that’s good news,” said City of Albuquerque Mayor Richard J. Berry.

Just this month, the City of Albuquerque has received calls from people wanting to book the pavilion for everything from weddings and memorials, to conventions and parties.

“We’re going to have an international Caribbean event here one year from now in November,” said Rice.

Rice said the pavilion is already booked for 41 events. Some events are even planned for 2017.

Daily rentals range from $500 to $1,000.

It has projectors, a sound system and the room divides to accommodate simultaneous events.

“It was awesome,” said BMX Track Director, Liz Fernandez. “This is our first year doing that there.”

Fernandez was at the Duke City BMX banquet over the weekend. She said more than 200 people celebrated at the pavilion.

“Every time we rent it, it’s a return on investment for the tax payers,” said Mayor J. Berry.

To learn more about hosting an event at the pavilion, click HERE or call 505.768.6062.

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