Temecula Valley Balloon and Wine Festival celebrates its 40th anniversary

Hot air balloons including the Temecula Valley Balloon & Wine Festival main sponsor, Pala Casino balloon prepare to take flight during a media day event. Valley News/Shane Gibson photo
The 40th anniversary of the Temecula Valley Balloon and Wine Festival kicked off Thursday, May 18, with a special Media Day at the beginning of a much larger festival than ever before.A ribbon-cutting ceremony at the event, hosted by the Temecula Valley Chamber of Commerce, signaled the beginning of weekend festivities that offered outstanding entertainment, hot air balloon rides, tastes of Temecula Wine Country’s best wines and craft beers, along with dozens of vendors all under the skies at Lake Skinner Recreation Area in Winchester.Awaiting the expected huge crowds on a beautiful weather weekend were almost 1,300 volunteers, smiling vendors, Chamber officials, public safety personnel, parking attendants and busy hot air balloon pilots, their ground crews and nonprofit represen
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