"America's Largest Balloon Parade" Returns December 27

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Big Bay Balloon ParadeThe Port of San Diego Big Bay Balloon Parade presented by San Diego County Credit Union, is set to step off at 10 a.m., Thursday, December 27.  The parade is a Pacific Life Holiday Bowl production and attracts more than 100,000 viewers to Harbor Drive’s scenic bay-front route.  This is a nationally and locally televised attraction; the USA Network will carry the national broadcast, while Channel 4 San Diego will air it locally.

The parade will have you “Groovin’ to the 70’s”.  Randy Jones, former San Diego Padre great and 1976 Cy Young Award winner, will be the Grand Marshal.  The event features over 25 giant balloons including your favorite characters such as Thomas the Tank Engine, Cat in the Hat, Betty Boop, Hello Kitty and Bob the Builder.

Other events surrounding the parade include the Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals, Bumble Bee Foods 5K Run and Amtrak Family Festival.

The 2007 Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals pits seven of the fastest dachshunds from all over the Southwest United States against each other on a 56-foot track.  The winner will be featured in the parade aboard the Wienerschnitzel float.  It starts at 9:30 a.m. in the parade television area.

The Bumble Bee Foods 5K Run kicks off the parade at 9:45 a.m.  Awards will be given to the top three finishers in each division. Registration is still open.  Runners will run in front of 100,000 spectators.

At the conclusion of the parade, families can enjoy the Amtrak Family Festival.  This is a free event with a rock wall challenge, quarterback pass, whale slide, field goal kicks and other family-friendly activities.

For more information, and to purchase parade television area grandstand tickets, call 619/283-5808.

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