One look at the autumn sky here, dotted each morning with colorful hot-air balloons, shows why the city has come to be known as the balloon capital of the world.
That reputation will only grow with the opening of a unique museum devoted to the rich history of this form of flight.
The Anderson-Abruzzo International Balloon Museum is scheduled to open Saturday, coinciding with Albuquerque’s annual Balloon Fiesta, which starts today and draws people from around the world.
“For people who aren’t balloonists ... there’s a sense of wonder about how these things get up in the air. And who are these people that wake up so early in the morning to do this?” said Marilee Schmit Nason, curator of collections for the new museum. “Our museum will answer those questions.”
Using interactive computerized exhibits, an expansive collection of ballooning memorabilia and displays of recordsetting balloons, the city hopes to bring to life the history of ballooning.
The displays, assembled from the collections of famous balloonists worldwide, will make their home in a new $20-million building.