Callaway Gardens seeking volunteers for hot air balloon festival

Published 6:08 pm Thursday, August 22, 2019

PINE MOUNTAIN — Volunteers are needed for an exciting opportunity to get involved as a balloon crew member at the 21st Annual Hot Air Balloon Festival at Callaway Resort and Gardens. The festival begins on Friday, Aug. 30 and runs until Sunday, Sept. 1. 

Hands-on experience with professional balloon pilots, exclusive perks and a thrilling weekend are some of the benefits volunteers will gain at the 21st Annual Hot Air Balloon Festival.

Volunteers must be 18 or older, able to work outside without shade and able perform some physically demanding tasks. As balloon crew members, volunteers will help the pilots and crew chiefs with various duties including inflating and tethering balloons, landing assistance and escorting guests. No previous experience is required. All that is needed is a pair of gloves and positive attitude from each volunteer.

Perks include free admission to the festival, two extra tickets per day of work, a ticket to the catered Pilot’s Dinner on Friday and pancake breakfast each day of work and a t-shirt.

Volunteers must be available to work one full shift on at least one day of the festival. 

Full days are preferred but not required. Below is the shift schedule. All shifts, except the pilot’s dinner are weather/wind dependent.

4Friday: 6 p.m. (attend Pilot’s Dinner) – 10 p.m.

4Saturday morning: 6:30 a.m. – 11 a.m.

4Saturday evening: 4 p.m. – 10 p.m.

4Sunday morning: 6:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. 

4Sunday evening: 4 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Every year, Callaway Resort and Gardens’ Hot Air Balloon Festival lights up the sky as visitors enjoy tethered rides and beach activities all day Saturday and Sunday and watch the Balloon Glows on Friday and Sunday nights. Volunteers are very important to ensure both pilots and guests have a great time. 

To learn how to become a volunteer, please contact Becky Thomas by phone at (706) 663-5043, or by email at or 

To learn more about the Hot Air Balloon Festival or other signature events, visit