Pellissippi State Balloon Festival

Few things capture the imagination like hot air balloons, and, as Tennessee Crossroads’ Gretchen Bates discovered, few events rival the annual Pellissippi State Balloon Festival in Knoxville, TN. Watch this and more episode segments of Nashville Public Television’s Tennessee Crossroads This business is closed, but please enjoy the memories of this journey.


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Few things capture the imagination like hot air balloons. And, as Gretchen Bates discovered, few events rival the annual Pellissippi State Balloon Festival in Knoxville.

Gretchen Bates joined Tennessee Crossroads in 2007 but had her first appearance on the show in 1991 when her community, The Farm, was featured on the show. Though born and raised in Lewis County, Gretchen left Tennessee to move to New York City and pursue a career in theatre. Highlights from her time in New York City include two summers at the Chautauqua Theatre, working with the Circe du Soleil, and seeing every show on Broadway. After six years on the stage in New York City, Gretchen returned home to Tennessee.

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