Balloon Ascension Day - January 9
Tue, Jan 9, 2024

Balloon Ascension Day

National Balloon Ascension Day commemorates the amazing event that took place on January 9, 1793. Many years ago, Jean-Pierre Blanchard took to the air in a balloon and flew across the English Channel. Let’s remember his feat today!


Jean-Pierre was born in 1753 in the north of France in the family of a turner. From childhood, the boy was interested in mechanics and dreamed of being able to fly like a bird. He worked on the creation of aircraft with wings, but this did not bring success. The inquisitive guy was not upset by failures, but rather spurred on to work further. By the way, he really failed projects in front of the public many times!

Blanchard did not make a successful flight alone, on board his ship was an American doctor, John Jeffreys. The design had a curious appearance and was the shape of a boat, equipped with an anchor and wings. In flight, everything went as it should, but after an hour the aircraft began to lose altitude. The men had to throw overboard all the things they had: tools, ballast, anchor, food, and in the last minutes they had to throw off their clothes.

It cannot be said that the landing was soft and triumphant: the pilots could not fly to the embankment, where crowds of onlookers gathered, but landed in the forest. This did not affect their work in any way: they surprised the whole world! The authorities installed a column, perpetuating the memory of men. On National Day, it is worth remembering the miraculous event that divided the world into “before” and “after”.

Interesting facts

It is noteworthy that:

  • Jean-Pierre died in 1808 – he fell down while flying in his balloon over The Hague;
  • in 2015, the balloon overcame the highest point of flight on a similar design – 69 feet;
  • the weight that balloons can carry is severely limited;
  • flight altitude is controlled by temperature, cooling or heating.

How to celebrate

The perfect way to celebrate National Balloon Ascension Day is to fly! It’s great if the surrounding area is picturesque: enjoying beautiful views is doubly pleasant. If you are afraid of heights, get rid of your fear!

When is Balloon Ascension Day celebrated in 2024?

Balloon Ascension Day is observed on January 9 each year.


Weekday Month Day Year
Tuesday January 9 2024
Thursday January 9 2025
Friday January 9 2026
Saturday January 9 2027

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