Hot air balloon lands unexpectedly in Md. family's backyard

- A Maryland family got an interesting surprise when a hot air balloon landed in their backyard during Thursday’s evening sunset.

The Preakness Celebration Balloon Festival kicked off Thursday afternoon and a hot air balloon that had taken off from Turf Valley Resort in Ellicott City needed a place to land before sunset and it found Courtney and Kevin Douglass’ property located a few miles away.

“The wind took us in this direction and we made a safe approach over the house and landed in the backyard so that we could end our flight,” said the balloon operator from Windrifter Ballooning.

The landing was a safe one and no one was injured. Thanks to the help of the children and adults in the neighborhood, they all helped the operator fold up and pack up the hot air balloon into its trailer.

The Preakness Celebration Balloon Festival is one of the many special events held to celebrate the running of the Preakness Stakes, which is being held this week. The event has been held for 40 years and allows spectators to get an up-close look at these balloons in addition to other family-friendly activities such as specialty crafts, entertainment and food.

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