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Taking Flight

June 15th, 2019 by Paul Kolimas

John Bonner and his wife Sandra have a lot of experience with hot air balloons. In John’s case, though, it was not as a passenger but as a pilot. For a long time, John flew his own hot air balloon. Meanwhile, Sandra would track the flight with her truck back on the ground That was quite some time ago, though.

This week John and Sandra stayed at the Cloran Mansion. John took advantage of the opportunity to take to the skies one more time, courtesy of Galena on the Fly at Eagle Ridge. It was his first flight since 1980. True to her old form, Sandra rode with the trackers back on earth, but she still managed to take plenty of great photos.

John was amazed at how far technology had come as he made his way a mile into the air, and he described a fantastic one-hour flight. Apparently the hot air balloon bug has never completely left John, as he recommends this unique way to see the beauty of the Galena area to anyone who visits!

For those of you who prefer to watch the skies rather than head into them in a wicker basket, this is a reminder that next weekend is the Great Galena Balloon Race, June 21-23. Come on out and enjoy the sights!

Hot air balloon taking off into blue sky

John’s balloon heads toward Elizabeth, IL

John stands next to wicker basket of hot air balloon

John poses for Sandra as he prepares for his flight

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