Saturday, November 15, 2008

25 countries to join 14th Hot Air Balloon fiesta in Clark

Nov. 14 — The Tourism and Promotions Office (TPO) of the Clark Development Corporation (CDC) announced that at least 25 countries are expected to participate in the 14th Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta (PIHABF).
TPO Manager Noemi Garcia said the CDC and Hot Air Balloon Club of the Philippines, on November 12 signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for the holding of the event from February 12 to 15 next year.Garcia added that the MOA was signed by CDC President Benigno N. Ricafort and Joi Roa, president of the Hot Air Balloon Club of the Philippines at the Café Mesa here.She also said more than 100,000 spectators are expected to attend the four-day event that would be held at Clark’s Civil Aviation Complex just beside the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport.Last year, Garcia said 19 balloons flew Clark skies during the previous hot air balloon fiesta. The four-day event brought in more than 21 pilots, 19 of which were flown by foreign pilots from 13 countries while the other two were flown by Filipino pilots.Garcia added that last year’s event was joined by pilots from the Philippines, Sweden, United States , Hungary , Thailand , Malaysia , Germany, United Kingdom, The Netherlands, Finland, Japan , Switzerland, England, and South Korea.Last year’s event also featured four paragliders, three from Malaysia and one from France, who flew thrice daily for the whole duration of the event.“This early we are already drawing plans to make the next hot air balloon fiesta a bigger and spectacular event as part of the Clark Development Corporation’s bid to transform Clark into a tourist haven north of Manila,” Garcia said. (PNA)

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