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CNN Today

Ballooners Waiting for Their Chance to Fly

Aired October 9, 2000 - 2:54 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: Finally here today, about 100 balloons filled the sky over Albuquerque this morning. Many more remained on the ground, though: Competition on day two of the International Balloon Fiesta canceled. Here's the story from Gina London.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

GINA LONDON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Like the sport of hot air ballooning itself, the 29th annual Balloon Fiesta in Albuquerque, New Mexico is having its share of ups and downs.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You don't anywhere else in the world experience such a large number of balloons in the air at once.

LONDON: On day one, the fiesta's mass ascension made it into "The Guinness Book of World Records" by launching 329 balloons within an hour.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I kind of like the bull dog.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They're all beautiful. You can't pick.

LONDON: The sky was clouded with three times as many balloons as the previous world record, set earlier this year in England.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) get in that one?

LONDON: Traditionally, the balloon fiesta is held each year at this time because the clear days and cool mornings make for great ballooning. But Sunday, the weather was anything but ideal. So day two of the fiesta and the sky was clouded with clouds.

A thousand balloons are registered from as far away as Japan and Kenya, and now, not a single balloon in the sky, hardly a person on the ground.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If the weather is nice, you do business. If the weather's not nice, well, too bad.

LONDON: Day three, a compromise of sorts: Although the sun refused to shine and it was quite picture-perfect, the rain did stop and some of the balloons took to the sky. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Despite the weather, it was like, oh, the weather this, the weather that, but yesterday, it was quite ehhh, you know, bad day, but today was awesome, even though it was a little overcast.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Could have been better, but it was a great day, because we still got to fly.

LONDON (on camera): Now, there are six more days for this event and better weather is predicted for tomorrow. So there should be balloon-filled blue skies before it's all over.

Gina London, CNN, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

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