Here’s what you won’t see: thousands of floating candles

This is cool, but will not happen. (Kernz & Kompany)

Looking ahead to the Sept. 21-23 hot-air balloon festival slated for this September in Duluth, Minnesota, event organizers quickly retracted a June 11 press release touting the launch of thousands of wax-fueled paper luminaries into the sky over Lake Superior as part of “Le Festival des Montgolfières à Duluth.”

DULUTH, MN—The mind of Ryan Kern continues to churn out literally brilliant ideas and a planned release of thousands upon thousands of Chinese Paper Lanterns from Duluth, MN in what would have been a photographers dream as part of the September 20-21-22 Le Festival des Montgolfières a Duluth is officially a no-go.

The Chinese Paper Lanterns are bio-degradable and use a wax fuel source to heat up air which is captured in a lantern. For those who have ever seen Disney’s movie TANGLED, the visions of thousands of lanterns a drifting across the night sky is truly remarkable and breathtaking.

“Le Festival des Montgolfières a Duluth is meant to be a rare family event for our community that is free, and my vision is to make it one if not the most beautiful, visually stunning event ever concocted in the region” said Kern. “We had originally announced that a massive lantern launch was to be a part of the festival a few months ago, but in order to make it a reality we would need to launch the lanterns from Superior, WI to stay in compliance with the state law, as they are illegal in Minnesota.”

For more information on the Le Festival des Montgolfières a Duluth (aka Duluth Hot Air Balloon Festival) visit

The odd tension emanating from the Kernz & Kompany press release was punctuated by this disclaimer:


Ooooooo. Some kid’s lifelong dream of doing P.R. for balloon festivals just went “pop.” That kind of stuff won’t fly at this kompany.

Meantime, wasn’t “Tangled” animated? Maybe instead of the paper candles we could cause light to shoot out of the fingertips of a beast and turn him into a handsome prince who respects women. We’d have to do that in Duluth, because I’m pretty sure that’s illegal in Superior. (HI-YO! Amiright, ladies!)

I kid, of course. I am all about the montgolfières.

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