Festival of Ballooning: General Registration with Behind the Scenes Pass

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Join Michael Downey for a photo workshop at the annual QuickChek NJ Festival of Ballooning, the most photographed event on the East Coast!  Don't miss out on capturing the breathtaking visuals of hot air balloons from around the world!

General Registration Includes:
• Instructional seminar on Wednesday, July 25th (6:00pm - 8:00pm)
• (1) Balloon Festival admission ticket for Friday (6:30pm Launch), Saturday (6:30am Launch), or Sunday (6:30am Launch)
• (1) "Behind the Scenes" field access pass for the selected day's launch

For 6:30am launches, please arrive at the Balloon Festival by 5:45am.
You may leave the Balloon Festival at any time on the day that you choose.

*There are only 20 spots per day/launch, so please choose carefully. Once it gets closer to the festival, we will NOT be able to make any changes.
*Tickets and passes will be handed out at the seminar. If you cannot attend, please email university@uniquephoto.com to arrange another pick-up time.

Click here for directions to the festival.
*Parking is NOT included and will cost $10 per vehicle at the festival.
*Michael Downey will be around the launch area during each launch time if you'd like to meet up with him and other registrants.

Available Dates

There are currently no upcoming classes.

INSTRUCTIONAL SEMINAR: Wednesday, July 25th (6:00pm - 8:00pm) @ Unique Photo (Fairfield)

BALLOON FESTIVAL (Your Choice): Friday, July 27th - Saturday, July 28th - Sunday, July 29th

Enjoy the QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning at Solberg Airport in Readington, New Jersey! You'll receive "Behind the Scenes" press pass access at the launch area, which allows you to get closer to the balloons as they're inflating and being set up for launch.

• For those attending the festival on Friday, you will receive special "Behind the Scenes" access to photograph the Friday evening launch (6:30pm).Please plan to arrive at the launch area by 5:30PM.

• For those attending the festival on Saturday, you will receive special "Behind the Scenes" access to photograph the Saturday morning launch (6:30am).Please plan to arrive at the launch area by 5:450AM.

• For those attending the festival on Sunday, you will receive special "Behind the Scenes" access to photograph the Sunday morning launch (6:30am). Please plan to arrive at the launch area by 5:45AM.

The QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning is the largest summertime hot air balloon and music festival in North America and is the premiere family entertainment attraction in NJ. It holds the dual distinction of being a recipient of The New Jersey Governor's Award for Best Special Event, as well as being designated, for the 6th time, as a Top 100 Festival in North America by the American Bus Association. Held annually at Solberg Airport, the festival truly has something for everyone! From twice daily mass ascensions of up to 100 special shape and sport hot air balloons, to headlining concerts, non-stop family entertainment, hundreds of crafters and vendors, great food, fireworks, a balloon glow, and more, the festival is jam-packed with stuff to do.

Unique University® is the highly acclaimed education component of Unique Photo®, NJ’s only camera and video superstore. There is over 2000 sq. ft. of learning space, including our start-of-the art, 1000 sq. ft. main presentation hall. Unique University’s mission is to help our visitors “Create Better Pictures” by providing photography education for beginners to pros. With events daily, it is the place where photography groups such as local camera clubs, ASMP, PPA and others meet. We have a full curriculum of classes and seminars from world famous speakers such as Art Wolfe, Rick Sammon, Michael Yamashita, Tyler Stableford, Lindsay Adler, and Will Crockett. We offer photography experiences to such places as the Prudential Center for Seton Hall Men's Basketball, Meadowlands Horse Racetrack, Lakota Wolf Preserve, NJ Jackals Baseball, Rutgers Football, Botanical Gardens, Festival of Ballooning, and much more. Our technical classes include such topics as basic D-SLR photography, lighting techniques, Adobe Photoshop, Elements, and Lightroom, macro photography, composition, editing and printing, wedding photography, HDR photography, working with speedlights, how to use social media, digital organization, one-on-one instruction, and much more. 


Where are classes held? 
Unless stated otherwise, classes are held in the Unique University classroom within the Unique Photo SuperStore (123 US Highway 46 West, Fairfield, NJ 07004). 

What should I bring to class? 
You're encouraged to bring your camera and a notebook and pen to most classes. Some classes will require additional equipment, so please check the class descriptions. 

Will lunch or refreshments be included? 
Lunch and refreshments are not provided for any classes under 6 hours unless noted. 

How do I register for a class? 
You can register online, in-store at the concierge, or by phone at either 973-377-6454 or 973-377-2007. Please note that you will need to provide payment information. 

Can I register at the door? 
For most classes, you're free to register at the concierge desk prior to the start of the class. Please note that there are some classes that offer "Early Bird Special" rates and others that have limited seating, so it would be in your best interest to register prior to the dates of such classes. 

I wanted to register for ______ class, but it is now sold out. Is there a waiting list? 
Please contact us at 973-377-6454 or university@uniquephoto.com with the following information: your name, phone number, email address, and the class name and date. 

My question has not been addressed here. Is there someone I can contact? 
Please contact us at 973-377-6454 or university@uniquephoto.com with any additional inquiries.

Unique University Class Cancellation Policy
- Classes costing less than $99 may be canceled up to 48 hours in advance for a full refund. For classes costing $100 or more, advanced notice of seven days before the class is necessary for a full refund.
- Requests for cancellation made after these deadlines will be awarded store credit in the amount paid for registration towards a future Unique University seminar or workshop.
- Cancellations made within 24 hours of the beginning of a class will not be honored and no refund or credit will be given.
- Cancellations of any class utilizing models will be subject to a cancellation fee of 50% of the purchased price (up to $100).
** Attention American Express cardholders: If you cancel a registration for a class costing $100 or more, there will be a 3% cancellation fee deducted from your refund or store credit.

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