May 7, 2016 @ 1:00 pm America/Chicago Timezone
Sci-Port: Louisiana's Science Center
820 Clyde Fant Pkwy
Shreveport, LA 71101
Workshops: Free with Center admission, Competitions: $25.00 Per Balloon Entry
Anne Lutz

Jr. Balloon Building Championships presented by Sci-Port & Red River Hot Air Balloon Rally

Take flight this summer at Sci-Port! Sci-Port and Red River Balloon Rally will offer balloon workshops during May, led by a balloonist, and balloon competitions in June, culminating in the Red River Balloon Rally’s Jr. Balloon Building Championships in July. Balloon building allows kids to explore physics, patience and creativity.

  • Attend a Balloon Building Workshop at Sci-Port on Saturdays in May at 1 p.m.
  • Build your balloon and compete at Sci-Port Saturdays in June at 9 a.m. Three winners will be selected from each age division: elementary school, middle school and high school.
  • Winners advance to the Red River Hot Air Balloon Rally’s Jr. Balloon Building Championship at LSUS on July 15 from 4 to 6 p.m.


Materials Needed:

  • One thin wire per balloon (#18 – #22 gauge electrical hook-up wire works well. Must be 36 inches long. You can use any wire material you want, but remember weight matters.)
  • 8 gore panels made from standard sheets of tissue paper, 4 to 6 feet long
  • Glue, tape, or glue stick
  • String or paper ribbon to tie off top of balloon
  • Colored pencils or crayons (balloon decoration optional)

Contest Rules on other materials and construction:

  1. Your hot air balloon is to be constructed from standard sheets of tissue paper or rolls of tissue paper to make at least 8 gore panels (4 to 6 feet long).
  2. Only tape, glue, or glue stick is allowed to attach your balloon gores together.
  3. Your hot air balloon will have a minimum 12 inch diameter opening held open by a thin wire. This allows the hot air balloon to be easily filled by the heat source.
  4. No other materials are permitted.
  5. No heat source may be carried aloft by the hot air balloon. Nothing can be attached at the bottom of the balloon. The balloon opening where the heat source will be inserted must not be obstructed in any manner.
  6. All launches will use the same heat source provided by the Red River Balloon Rally balloonist at Sci-Port.
  7. As a contest, timing will commence when the balloon is released above the heat source and will stop when the balloon touches the ground or any object attached to or resting on the ground.
  8. Points will be awarded to the balloon that is airborne for the longest duration. Points will also be awarded for uniqueness, construction quality and creativity.

No one will be allowed at the balloon burner except the RRBR and Sci-Port representatives.

Hints: Use bright colored tissue paper so it will be easy to see. When you glue your balloon together, be patient. To repair small holes and tears use scotch tape or a patch with glue. Good Luck!

Anne Lutz
Revenue Programs Manager
Sci-Port Discovery Center

Saturdays in May, 1 p.m.
Balloon Building Workshops
Free with Center admission

Saturdays in June, 9 a.m.
Balloon Building Competitions
$25 Race Entry Fee Per Balloon

Friday, July 15, 4–6 p.m.
Jr. Building Championship

1. Attend a workshop.
2. Download form and return.

Download the form here.