The Lincoln Art & Balloon Festival began as a small art fair and has evolved into one of the Midwest’s finest family festivals.
In 1974, the Greater Lincoln Area Chamber of Commerce (now the Lincoln/Logan County Chamber) and the Downtown Lincoln Council sponsored an art fair
around the Logan County Courthouse in downtown Lincoln "…to provide the community with an opportunity to purchase original works of art."
Local citizens pledged to purchase art in advance through "Art Patron Purchases." These guaranteed sales attracted quality artists and grew the event’s reputation throughout the Midwest. Within a couple of years, the art fair moved one block north to shady Latham Park, where it has been held now for over thirty years.
What about the hot air balloons?
To celebrate the Art Fair’s 15th Anniversary in 1989, organizers brought in hot air balloons as an added attraction. The balloon activities were an instant hit with the festival crowds and have continued to draw crowds for seventeen years! They were so popular, in fact, that the festival grew to such a proportion that a second location was needed. An additional location at the local fairgrounds provided the necessary room to accommodate the spectators, the growing number of hot air balloons, and additional components such as a carnival, food concessions, entertainment, and crafters.
In 2005, the Chamber of Commerce proposed a plan to the Logan County Board to move the hot air balloons and related activities to the Logan County Airport. This plan was approved and the new "home" provides a safe environment for balloon launches, additional parking, and room to expand the festival in future years. The downtown Art Fair remains in Latham Park and additional activities have ’sprung up’ all over town!
Now in its’ 33rd year, the Lincoln Art & Balloon Festival continues a tradition of wholesome, affordable family entertainment, drawing ‘friends of the festival’ from throughout the region.
Source: Lincoln Art & Balloon Festival
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