Smokey Bear to fly at Hot Air Balloon Rodeo in Steamboat Springs | CraigDailyPress.com

Smokey Bear to fly at Hot Air Balloon Rodeo in Steamboat Springs

The Yampa Valley will be treated to an impressive visual reminder of human-caused wildfire prevention this weekend when the Smokey Bear Balloon takes part in the 33rd Annual Hot Air Balloon Rodeo, according to a press release.

The Smokey Bear Balloon will fly over Steamboat Springs on Saturday and Sunday mornings, as one of more than 30 balloons expected to participate in this year's event. At nearly 100 feet tall and 75 feet wide, the flying image is a testament to one of America's most successful informational campaigns and is a must-see.

The Smokey Bear Balloon was built and sent aloft by a unique public/private partnership of volunteers, private sponsors, National Association of State Foresters and the U.S. Forest Service. The Friends of the Smokey Bear Balloon Inc. is the sole licensee for use of the Smokey Bear image in balloon form and for selling related balloon products.

In addition to the morning flights, the Smokey Bear crew will be participating in Saturday night's Balloon Glow by illuminating a smaller version of the balloon.

Smokey Bear turns 70 on Aug 9. Despite the campaign's success throughout the past 70 years, human-caused wildfire prevention remains one of the most critical issues affecting our country. Smokey's message is as relevant today as it was in 1944, "Only You Can Prevent Wildfires."

For more information about the Hot Air Balloon Rodeo and Art in the Park weekend, visit http://www.hotairballoonrodeo.com or contact the Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association at 970-879-0880.