CONTACT: Karen Beasley, Vice President of Marketing & Communications
Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association
PHONE: 256.350.3500 / 800.648.5381


Celebrate Memorial Day Holiday Weekend at Decatur’s Hot Air Balloon Festival

Decatur, Ala. (April 18, 2024) – More than 60 big beautiful hot-air balloons will fill the sky above Decatur, Ala., the last weekend in May during the annual Alabama Jubilee Hot Air Balloon Classic. The must-see event of North Alabama is set for Memorial Day weekend, May 25-26, 2024, at Point Mallard Park and features hot air balloons, a balloon glow, antique cars and tractors, arts and crafts, fireworks and other family fun with activities on the ground and in the air.

The Alabama Jubilee Hot Air Balloon Classic has become a Memorial Day weekend tradition for local families and visitors for over 45 years. The celebration begins bright and early Saturday, May 25, at 6:30 a.m., with the hare and hound balloon race: one balloon flies off and the others try to follow to see which pilot can get closest to a target put down by the hare balloon.

Additional activities on Saturday include a hands-on historical tool area, an antique and classic auto expo from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and the Southland Flywheelers will host an antique tractor show, featuring some of the best restored and maintained tractors in the Southeast. A tractor parade follows at 10 a.m., and from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., there will be tractor games and a pedal tractor park opens for kids 6 years old and under. Beginning at 5:30, some balloons will lift off for an evening flight and the Balloon Glow at 8:15 p.m. is a must see as towering balloons of all colors light up Point Mallard Park.

Held under the pavilion, the popular Decatur Art Guild arts and crafts show is Saturday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Another round of friendly competition between the hot-air balloon pilots is scheduled Sunday, May 26 with the Lynn Layton Key Grab. Balloons should start flying into the Jubilee field starting about 7 a.m. in order to grab a ring from the top of a tall pole.  A secondary goal is to drop a bean-bag marker at the center of an 'X' that is also placed at the pole. Another fun flight is set to launch at 5:30 p.m. and free tethered rides will be available starting at 6:30 p.m. The two-day event concludes with a fireworks show at 9:30 p.m.

Admission to and parking at the Alabama Jubilee are free. Blankets and lawn chairs are encouraged. For safety reasons, smoking is not permitted on the launch field and pets are strongly discouraged due to the loud noise caused by the balloons and the large number of people present. All balloon activities are weather permitting. Balloons do not fly, tether or glow in the rain or if wind on the ground is stronger than about 8 mph or if there are thunderstorms nearby. During festival hours, Point Mallard Park is a “No-Drone Zone” according to FAA regulations.

All activities take place inside Point Mallard Park, a 750-acre municipal park providing year-round recreation facilities in Decatur, Ala. For more information and a schedule of events, visit

About Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association (AMLA)

AMLA is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the promotion and development of the $4.7 billion North Alabama travel industry within the 16 northernmost counties of the state. It is supported by 500-plus members consisting of chambers of commerce, convention & visitors bureaus, attractions, campgrounds, festivals, communities, golf courses, restaurants, accommodations and vendors. Counties included within the AMLA region are Blount, Cherokee, Colbert, Cullman, DeKalb, Etowah, Franklin, Jackson, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, Marion, Marshall, Morgan and Winston. Additional information on North Alabama destinations, accommodations and special events is available by calling 800.648.5381, by visiting and by following us on social media @VisitNorthAL.