Up and Away Ballooning - First to Offer Wheelchair Access!

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upAwayBallooning_wheelchair1.jpgWindsor, California - In Spring 2011, Up & Away Ballooning becomes the first hot air balloon operator in the United States to offer wheelchair-confined adventurers the opportunity to soar above the magnificent hills and vineyards of Northern California's Sonoma County. The Pegasus Project's specially-designed and crafted passenger basket, shipped directly from England, will make it possible for those persons who are dependent upon wheelchairs for mobility to literally float above the Wine Country.

Up & Away Ballooning ordered the specially-designed basket from London. The easy access Lindstrand  basket measures approximately 4 feet by 7 feet and can carry a wheelchair rider and up to three others. Without wheelchair, it can accommodate six people. Modeled originally after Lindstrand's 'Glass' bottom basket system, its lowered rail makes it possible for the seated passenger to enjoy more than180-degree visibility.

Mike and Patti Kijak, owners of Up & Away Ballooning made the decision to purchase the wheelchair-accessible basket in response to numerous inquiries from private individuals and travel agents with clients seeking to experience Northern California's picturesque Wine Country from this breathtaking vantage point. 
upAwayBallooning_wheelchair2.jpg"It's a dream three years in the making," Mike confides of their plan to create an equal access outdoor adventure for persons in wheelchairs.

The inaugural flight is scheduled for early April (weather permitting) and a percentage of proceeds from each flight will benefit the International Wheelchair Foundation.
 
Established in 1993 Up & Away Ballooning flies the newest Federal Aviation Administration (F.A.A.) certified balloon equipment and its pilots are FAA certified. By choice they carry fewer passengers per balloon and flights follow a scenic route that takes longer than other flights in the area. Their fleet of beautiful, brightly colored balloons can accommodate couples, families and groups. Large groups can easily be flown with multiple balloons. Private flights for two can also be scheduled, depending upon availability.

For more information, call 707-836-0171 or visit http://www.up-away.com.

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