Balloons Over Bend

This weekend, PacificSource sponsored “Balloons Over Bend” for the second year in a row. We love this event because it gives us a great opportunity to encourage families to be healthier, and have fun doing it! The weekend-long event starts with “Night Glow” on Friday, and then moves on to the children’s festival on Saturday and Sunday, with two hot air balloon launches early each morning (more on that later).

Here’s what our crazy weekend in Bend looked like:

Friday: Xochitl (our wellness intern) and I rolled out in our Healthy Life Mobile and headed to Bend. We learned a lot about each other on our first road trip together. For example, I learned that Xochitl has been to 10 different countries, and she learned that I know all the words to Will Smith’s “Gettin’ Jiggy With It.”

Since we were coming from Eugene, we were kind of worried our little Healthy Life Mobile might die over the Santiam Pass, but it was a champ! We made it to Bend, and then it was time for “Night Glow,” where the pilots filled up and lit their hot air balloons for the crowd. While the audience ooo-ed and awe-ed over the hot air balloons, we sold glowing balloons as a benefit for Saving Grace, a nonprofit organization that “promotes the value of living free from violence.” They were so popular that we could barely keep up with the demand! After blowing up and tying 200 balloons, we had blisters on our hands, and dizziness on the brain. But raising $255 for such a great cause as Saving Grace made it all worth it.

Saturday: Next was the children’s festival where we set up the “PacificSource Healthy Life Kids Zone.” We had six other partners join us, including Smith Martial Arts, Bend Rock Gym, BlueFish Dental, The Center Foundation, Mosaic Medical, and Healthy Kids. Since all of our partners had a shared objective of promoting healthy living to children, it was an awesome set up. Our partners helped us make the “Healthy Life Kids Zone” really fun and educational. With short workouts for kids, a barrage of games, concussion demonstrations that involved smashing cantaloupes to simulate what can happen when you don’t wear a bike helmet, and of course, our “Minute to Win it” games and healthy snacks, we had all kinds of fun stuff to offer. The kids had a blast, and so did we!

Sunday: To kick off Sunday morning, a few lucky PacificSource folks had the chance to ride in a hot air balloon. Despite their dual fears of heights and waking up at 4:45am, the experience was extraordinary, and it really gave a great idea of how incredible the event is.

Later in the morning, we had one more fun-filled day at the children’s festival. After it was all said and done, we were hot, tired, but extremely happy with how the weekend went. We couldn’t have had a better experience. Best of all, since “Balloons Over Bend” benefitted Saving Grace, we walked away knowing that an incredible cause got a big boost.

Of all the events I’ve worked at so far during my internship, “Balloons Over Bend” is definitely one of my favorites. A special thanks to all of our partners in the “Healthy Life Kids Zone,” and Lay it Out Events for putting on such an incredible event. I could go on and on about how great the event was, but instead, I’ll let this video do the talking:

Leave a comment


  1. So-chill Xochitl - Wellness Intern

     /  July 26, 2012

    Such a cool video! This was a great experience. I would do it all over again any weekend with you Rachel 🙂

  2. Justin

     /  July 26, 2012

    Thanks for sponsoring such a wonderful Bend event!

  1. A Farewell to Rachel the Intern « Million Ideas

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