They won Balloon Festival’s debut Landowner Appreciation Raffle
On June 15, while participating in a mass launch during the annual Chester County Balloon Festival, the prevailing breezes prompted a hot-air balloon pilot from New York to land in a Toughkenamon backyard.
Like the other balloonists who descended throughout Chester County, the pilot continued a centuries-old tradition of providing a bottle of champagne to the landowners. In this case, Joe and Billie Teti also received what turned out to be a welcome windfall: the winning entry form for the debut of the Landowner Appreciation Raffle.
Deb Harding of Air Ventures in Glenmoore, who handled landowner relations for this year’s festival, said the raffle added a new way to thank homeowners for welcoming the balloons. The basket contained more than $1,000 worth of gifts and gift certificates from local supporting businesses, restaurants and wineries, she said.
Harding said residents in communities surrounding Plantation Field in Unionville, where the festival was held, were encouraged to attract pilots by placing old sheets marked with an “X” in fields or on lawns or by displaying large “land here” signs.
So while the Tetis are enjoying their bounty, such as dinner at the Four Dog Tavern in Marshallton or 10 free tasting coupons from the Chaddsford Winery, Harding said the festival appreciated the support from homeowners as well as businesses and hopes it will continue. She also has some advice for residents would like a chance to win next year: Save those old sheets.