Today In Disney History ~ July 16th
After n 18-month 11-city tour in 2006 the ballon returned in 2012. See the Disney Parks Blog info on the topic below.
‘The Happiest Balloon on Earth’ Takes to the Skies Once Again by Paul Hiffmeyer, Disney Parks Blog, Published Tue, November 6, 2012
I’ve got great news to share today. “The Happiest Balloon on Earth,” our Mickey Mouse-shaped hot air balloon, will participate in the 11th Annual International Balloon Festival in León, Guanajuato, Mexico, November 16-19 along with at least 200 other balloons from around the world.
“The Happiest Balloon on Earth” is a giant representation of Mickey Mouse’s face – and when I say giant, I’m talking about 98 feet tall and 53 feet from ear-to-ear – making it really hard to miss.
The balloon took to the skies on its maiden flight in Pendleton, Ore., on March 23, 2006, just before it started “The Happiest Balloon on Earth” tour during the 18-month celebration of the50th Anniversary of the opening of Disneyland Resort. The balloon tour visited the Grand Canyon; Vancouver, Canada; Seattle, Wash.; Portland, Ore.; and San Francisco, Calif., just to mention a few. Oh – I almost forgot to mention that “The Happiest Balloon on Earth” also visited Disneyland park.
After the 18-month tour was over, “The Happiest Balloon on Earth” received a magical makeover: the 50th Anniversary golden Mickey Mouse Ears were removed, giving the balloon the look it has today.
Above, you can see “The Happiest Balloon on Earth” on its maiden flight in Pendleton, Ore.
Here is “The Happiest Balloon on Earth” peeking over the Disneyland Resort at sunrise.
“The Happiest Balloon on Earth” was then inflated again on the banks of the Yakima River in Prosser, Wash., in September 2006 during a hot air balloon festival.
And here is “The Happiest Balloon on Earth” flying over Prosser, Wash.
I would like to acknowledge pilots Scott and Laurie Spencer, who have taken “The Happiest Balloon on Earth” to new heights and will be joining us again next week in León, Mexico, for the 11th Annual International Balloon Festival. Check back here on the Disney Parks Blog – I’ll be sharing some of my photos of the “Happiest Balloon on Earth” as it takes to the skies once again.
TMSM Today in Graphic by Sherry Rinaldi DeHart; Disney Parks Blog