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Up Up and Away Florida – Hot Air Balloon Festival in Lakeland

Hot Air Balloon Festival Lakeland Up Up Away Florida 2022

Make plans to attend one of the most unique events in Lakeland – a Florida hot air balloon festival!  

Up Up and Away Florida will be held at the SUN ‘n FUN campus from Friday, May 6 – Sunday, May 8, 2022. During this 3-day festival, you’ll enjoy vibrant colorful balloon glows, morning and evening hot air balloon launches, tethered balloon rides, live music, great food and beverage options, vendors, helicopter rides, a kids zone, entertaining shows, and fun for the entire family. {It is also Mother’s Day weekend – a fun idea for something to do with mom!}

The best part is that your admission ticket is valid for a full day and you can come and go – so if you have kids sports, family activities, want to visit Mayfaire by-the-Lake, go to brunch for Mother’s Day, or just take a break and run home in the middle of the day, you can leave the event and come back later in the day.

We’re giving away tickets for Up Up and Away Florida – details below. This post and ticket giveaways are sponsored by Up Up and Away Florida.

**This is a weather dependent event – be sure to check Facebook for weather delays and schedule updates –**

Up Up and Away Florida Video

Things to Do at Up Up and Away Florida

Entertaining Shows

Guests young and old will enjoy a variety of entertaining shows each day.

  • The Space Adventures Thrill Show is a space themed, motorcycle riding, fire twirling, aerobatics show.
  • Squawk! Bird Show features talented parrots that are full of personality and deliver a fast paced, laugh out loud show featuring unusual tricks, great talkers, & audience participation.
  • K-9 Demonstrations from local law enforcement agencies
  • Car Show on Sunday

See the full event schedule on the website.

Up Up Away Lakeland 2022

Hot Air Balloon Launches

Hot air balloon launches are scheduled between 7am – 8:30am Saturday and Sunday, and between 6pm – 7pm Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Please check the schedule if you want to see balloons launching, they only launch during cooler hours of the day, at dawn or before sunset, when winds are typically light. (While there will be balloons on display and tethered rides during the day, the ONLY times you can see balloons take off is during these launch windows – plan accordingly)

Keep in mind that balloon launches and rides are weather-dependent – the wind must cooperate for a safe flight. Follow Up Up and Away Florida on Facebook and Instagram for live updates or listen for on-site announcements.

Balloon Night Glow

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evening from 8:15pm – 9:15pm, balloons will GLOW in the dark night. Don’t miss this gorgeous display while you listen to live music.

Hot Air Balloon Festival Lakeland (3)

Live Music

Up Up and Away is also a weekend music festival in Lakeland! There will be live music performances by professional bands throughout the 3-day festival, with 10+ bands performing Friday evening, all day Saturday, and all day Sunday including the Rico Monaco Band. Visit the website to learn more about the talented music lineup for 2022.

Up Up Away Florida 2022 Live Music Lineup

Tethered Balloon Rides

Tethered Balloon Rides will be available on-site during the event. Tethered balloons are a great opportunity to experience a hot air balloon launch but they only go up 30-40 feet in the air, hover for a few minutes, and come back down. There are tethered balloon ride windows each morning 7:30-9:30am and evening from 6-9pm, this activity is also wind and weather dependent. $20 per person on site, cash only.

Kids Zone + Inflatables

A Kids Zone will be available at the event with inflatables and games for children. There is also a mobile ax throwing booth.

Food + Drinks

You can enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner at Up Up and Away with a variety of food vendors. Adults, be sure to stop by the Barone Fini wine garden, and check the schedule for wine tastings. If you visit on Sunday, moms can enjoy 2 for 1 mimosas from 7am – 11am.

Free Admission to the Florida Air Museum

The Florida Air Museum, Florida’s Official Aviation Museum, is located on the SUN ‘n FUN Campus. The Florida Air Museum is open year-round and the construction is now complete on the Ramus SkyLab Innovation Center. It features a dynamic display of the best examples aviation has to offer including one-of-a-kind designs, classics, ultra-lights, antiques and war-birds. Explore the Discovery Zone featuring hands on STEM games and activities for kids. Your event wristband includes free admission to the Florida Air Museum.

Hot Air Balloon Rides

Book a hot air balloon ride over Lakeland. All balloon rides are booked directly with the participating FAA Certificated Commercial Hot Air Balloon Pilots attending the festival and require a waiver. Balloon Rides are $250 per person – CASH ONLY. Balloon rides are available Saturday, May 7, 2022, and Sunday, May 8, 2022.  Visit the Up Up and Away Website to learn more about booking a hot air balloon ride.


Stay the weekend at Up Up and Away on the SUN ‘n FUN grounds. RV and Tent Camping is available from May 1 – 9. Visit the website to learn more about camping options and prices. (Camping rates do not include event admission)

Up Up Away Lakeland Live Music
Live Music – Up Up and Away 2020

Know Before you Go to to the Hot Air Balloon Festival in Lakeland

Tickets for Up Up and Away Florida

  • Daily admission is $20 per person if purchased in advance online by 5/5/22 or $25 at the gate
  • Kids 6 & under receive free admission
  • BEST DEALFamily Pass – $60 for 4 one-day admission passes (only available in advance online through midnight 5/5/22)
  • Parking is FREE

Save time and money by purchasing your tickets ahead of time – plus you’ll get to skip the lines when you arrive and head straight into the event. Your event wristband will also allow you to leave and re-enter the event on that day.

Up Up and Away Florida Hours

  • Friday, May 6, 2022: 3pm – 9:15pm
  • Saturday, May 7, 2022: 7am – 9:15pm
  • Sunday, May 8, 2022: 7am – 9:15pm
  • Parking Gates open 60 minutes prior to festival opening
  • The balloon launch window is 7am – 8:30am on both Saturday & Sunday! Arrive early to see this amazing event. 


The event is located at the SUN ‘n FUN Campus – 4175 Medulla Rd, Lakeland, FL 33811. Follow the signs for parking.

On-Site Shuttles + Mobility Options

There will be complimentary golf carts and passenger trams to transport guests inside the event. Electric scooters and wheelchairs are also available for rent.

Safety Tips while at Up Up and Away

  • Watch where you are walking and keep kids nearby. Balloonists are thrilled to have you watching, or even helping, as they inflate their balloons, but your shoes on the balloon’s delicate fabric easily cause damage, or you can get tangled in their ropes.
  • Take precautions just as you would at any theme park or event with a large crowd. Take a photo of your kids so you’ll know what they were wearing in case you get separated and need to alert security. Be sure older kids have your cell phone memorized. For younger kids, write your number on their body or pin it inside their shorts.

Things to Take With You

  • CASH – many vendors only accept cash
  • Stroller or Wagon (if needed) – the festival covers a large area and does require some walking
  • Sunglasses & Sunscreen – this event is entirely outdoors
  • Backpack – backpacks are allowed (may be subject to search), and are always the best way to carry gear when you need your hands free to keep track of the kiddos.
  • Chairs and blankets – if you want to sit down and watch the balloons or live entertainment, you might like to have a blanket or chairs instead of sitting on the ground.
  • Portable phone charger
  • Earplugs or noise-canceling headphones if you have little ones who are easily scared – the balloons do make noise as they are being inflated
  • Ponchos – it’s Florida in May, there is usually a chance of rain, but often only a brief shower. There aren’t a lot of indoor spaces where you can find cover, so pack a poncho if anyone will be upset about getting wet.

Not Allowed Inside Festival

  • Coolers, outside food or drinks – there are plenty of food and drink vendors inside the event
  • Bicycles, hoverboards, skates, strap on skate shoes, golf carts, skateboards, kids scooters, and similar items
  • Pets other than service animals
  • Pop Up Tents
  • Drones
  • Firearms, fireworks and explosives
  • Absolutely NO SMOKING – this is a safety issue around hot air balloons
  • (Some of these items are allowed within the campground only. Visit the FAQ Section to learn more if you are camping.)

Visit the Up Up and Away Website for a full list of FAQ’s – look for the “Up Up and Away Florida 2022 Rules & Tips” near the bottom of the page.

Hot Air Balloon Festival Lakeland

This Event is Rain or Shine – Balloon launches are weather-dependent

Please be advised that this is a rain or shine event. Balloon launches and rides are weather-dependent. There is a NO REFUNDS policy. If the balloons are unable to launch due to weather, no refunds will be issued for admission tickets or camping. Even if the winds don’t cooperate for one or more of the balloon launches, there will still be live music, entertainment, kids activities, food and drink, and plenty of fun. Plus you can come in and out during the day so if the morning winds are bad, you can come back for the evening launch window.

Don’t miss Up Up and Away Florida – a hot air balloon festival in Lakeland, Florida. It is going to be a weekend to remember! 

Giveaway – Enter to Win Tickets

This giveaway has ended. Sign up for our weekly email newsletter to be notified of future giveaways.

Submit your name and email below to enter to win 4 tickets to Up Up and Away Florida – May 6 – 8, 2022. These tickets will be valid for 1-day admission for ages 7+. Kids under 7 receive free admission.

The deadline to enter to win is Monday, May 2 at 10am. Winners will be contacted via email or text. Full contest rules are at the end of this post.


  • Tickets are for the event, date, and time specified and cannot be transferred to another event or show time unless the information above states otherwise.
  • Lakeland Mom assumes no responsibility for this event beyond the distribution of tickets. All event participants attend at their own risk.
  • You must be 18 or older and live in Central Florida to enter this giveaway.
  • You must use a valid email address to enter this giveaway.
  • One entry per person. Additional entries will be removed from our list.
  • Winner will be selected randomly from all entries.
  • We will contact the winner via the email address provided OR via Facebook as soon as the winner is selected. The winner will have two [2] days (48 hours) to respond. If the winner does not respond within the two[2] days (48 hours), the prize will be forfeited and another winner chosen. Directions for claiming the prize will be given via email. A valid photo ID and/or mailing address may be required.
  • By entering this giveaway, you are subscribing to Lakeland Mom’s weekly newsletter email list. Visit our Site Policies page for our Privacy Policy.
  • For a complete list of Lakeland Mom’s giveaway policies and terms and conditions, see our Site Policies page. By entering this giveaway, you agree to comply with Lakeland Mom’s terms and conditions.

Spring Activities Guide

Check out our full Spring Activities Guide for more things to do in Lakeland, Polk County, and Central Florida from January – May. BBQ Festivals, Valentine’s Day, 5k races, seasonal events, annual favorites, SUN ‘n FUN, Easter Egg Hunts, Mother’s Day, and more.