Save The Date! The 2024 Homecoming Festival In Wonosobo Is Ready To Present Entertainment And Exciting Hot Air Balloon Attractions

The Wonosobo Regency Government, in partnership with the Wonosobo Balloon Community and Event Organizer, will be hosting the 2024 Homecoming Festival from April 11-20, with the Wonosobo Square event taking place on Sunday, April 21.

The Homecoming Festival is an event initiated in 2023 by Disparbud and the balloon community involving event organizers, which aims to be an entertainment attraction for the people of Wonosobo, especially homecoming travelers. Apart from that, it is a place for creativity for Wonosobo hot air balloon creators to preserve the tradition of flying hot air balloons to enliven Eid al-Fitr.

Head of Marketing for the Wonosobo Tourism and Culture Department, Sri Fatonah Werdiyati Ismangil, explained that the balloon festival itself is Wonosobo's flagship event with all groups, both local and foreign communities.

"Apart from the Balloon Festival, at the peak of the Homecoming Festival there will also be a culinary festival and cultural arts performances," said Fatonah in her statement on Tuesday, March 19, 2024.

He added, the balloon festival 2023 was held in eight locations, this year it will be developed in 14 locations including Kembaran Kalikajar Village, Simbang Kalikajar Village, Lamuk Kalikajar, Reco Kertek, Karangluhur Kertek, Candiyasan Kertek, Bojasari Kertek, Wringinanom Kertek. Next, Semayu Selomerto, Distancesari Wonosobo, Sambek, Gondang Watumalang, Mudal Mojotengah and the peak at Wonosobo Square.

He emphasized that specifically for the peak of the Homecoming Festival which was held at Wonosobo Square, the target for the balloons that would be 'Mumbul Together' (the term for flying balloons together with tethers) will be 40 balloons.

''These balloons will be raised from 06.00 until around 09.00 WIB. "Why was it raised in the morning, because that's the best time for this giant balloon 7 meters high and 3-4 meters in diameter to fly because the wind is still stable," he explained.

Fatonah also explained the motifs and techniques for making typical Wonosobo balloons. He explained that these balloons were made of paper with very varied typical Wonosobo motifs and contrasting colors.

Each traditional balloon is filled with air through a smoking method which is produced by burning coconut shells in a stove made of biscuit tins for approximately 30 minutes by approximately 5-7 people in a very compact manner.

Each balloon that is made, he continued, uses a complicated process that takes an average of two weeks to one month to make.

''Later the balloons will be raised to an average height of 75-150 meters and cannot be released. "The balloon will be lowered if it starts to run out of air and will be smoked again if the weather allows it to be raised again," he added.
140 Culinary Booths

Apart from the balloon festival, at the Puncak Homecoming Festival, there was also a culinary festival consisting of traditional culinary delights to cure the homesickness of travelers with typical Wonosobo food and snacks as well as modern culinary types that are always popular with people in all circles.

There is also a typical Wonosobo coffee stand, as well as various types of appetizing drinks. At the peak of the 2024 Homecoming Festival at Wonosobo Square, it is planned that there will be 140 culinary and beverage stands surrounding the square and Jalan Merdeka. On the other hand, the public will also be entertained with cultural arts performances such as Lengger, Kuda Lumping, and various other performing arts.

"It is hoped that through this event, the community's economy will continue to improve as well as being a tourist attraction to attract tourist visits to Wonosobo and also as an effort to preserve the Wonosobo balloon tradition so that it continues to be developed by the younger generation and does not become extinct," he concluded.

Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Wonosobo Balloon Community, Agam Setyobudi appreciated and supported the homecoming festival activities by involving his community.

In his view, the homecoming and balloon festival has implications for local MSMEs and the circulation of money in Wonosobo increases so it is hoped that it will help and have a positive impact on the people of Wonosobo.

''This event certainly has an economic impact, because many visitors from outside Wonosobo come to enjoy the balloon festival so that more people will be helped, from restaurants to accommodation,'' he said.

Agam explained that the tradition of flying balloons in Wonosobo has been around since the 1930s. The characteristic of the balloons here is that they have characteristic batik motifs to unique modern motifs that emphasize aesthetics.

"Motifs and neatness in making are a priority because there is prestige among groups of balloon makers who always produce unique motifs and creations, of course on a positive side," he said.

He said that his party had once made a giant balloon with a length of 25 meters in collaboration with the Trans 7 Adventurers Trail team. With 3,000 members, he was optimistic that the balloon community would also support tourism development in Wonosobo.

Schedule for the Balloon Festival in Wonosobo 2024

Twin Balloon Festival (April 11-14)
Semayu Balloon Festival (12 April)
Karangluhur Balloon Festival (13-14 April)
Lamuk Balloon Festival (April 13-14)
Kaliasem Balloon Festival (14-15 April)
Distance Balloon Festival (16 April)
Simbang Balloon Festival (12-16 April)
Mudal Balloon Festival (17 April)
Reco Balloon Festival (April 16-17)
Sambek Balloon Festival (18-19 April)
Anshor/Bojasari Siyono Balloon Festival (14-15 April)
Anshor/Candiyasan Balloon Festival (18-19 April)
Wringinanom Balloon Festival (April 20)
The highlight of the festival is Sunday 21 April at Wonosobo Square

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