Travelers to the Great Smoky Mountains will be able to view the area in a completely new way – from up to 400 feet in the air with WonderWorks’ newest iconic attraction, Wonders of Flight, scheduled to open July 2012.
Guests board a gondola beneath the giant blue and green helium-filled balloon located on a landing platform situated behind WonderWorks. The 72-foot diameter balloon holds up to 30 guests in the gondola at one time.
One of only two attractions of its kind in the Southeast, the Wonders of Flight balloon (the Aero30NG) was manufactured in France by Aerophile, the world leader in tethered gas balloons. The Southeast’s other tethered balloon is located at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla., while others are featured in some of the world’s biggest amusement parks including China’s Ocean Park and Oct East Amusement Park and France’s Disneyland.
According to Jérôme Giacomoni, Aerophile President, the open air gondola will allow guests to experience the sensation of being on a flying balcony. “The ascents, by day or night, provide guests with an unmatched, 360-degree panoramic view of the Smoky Mountains,” said Giacomoni. “In one single gaze, the entire breathtaking view can be seen from exceptional heights.”
The Wonders of Flight balloon is environmentally friendly and totally silent thanks to its permanently inflated helium envelope and a hydro-electric winch. “The system consumes no more energy than an elevator and is completely noiseless,” says Giacomoni.
Wonders of Flight will provide guests with a unique and affordable experience at a special opening rate of $14.99 (plus tax) for adults and $9.99 (plus tax) for children. Children 36-inches and under will be admitted for free. The 10 minute flight experience is offered daily, with daytime and evening hours, weather permitting. Additionally, Wonders of Flight is an ideal attraction for groups, weddings and adventurers of all ages.
“Especially those couples looking for an intimate and truly one-of-a-kind wedding should consider Wonders of Flight as it creates a romantic, storybook setting overlooking the picturesque Great Smoky Mountains,” said Ed Shaffer, general manager of WonderWorks.
WonderWorks, in Pigeon Fork, Tennessee, bills itself as an “amusement park for the mind,” combining education and entertainment in more than 100 hands-on exhibits that will spark the imagination and stimulate the mind. Visitors to the attraction will enjoy a variety of experiences including being blown away by 65 mile per hour hurricane-force winds, maneuvering the controls of a NASA spacecraft to land the shuttle, lying on a bed of 3,500 nails, piloting a fighter jet, designing and riding a 360-degree virtual roller coaster, climbing a 50 foot tall ropes challenge course, competing in a game of lazer tag and much more.
To learn more about WonderWorks and the new Wonders of Flight attraction, visit www.WonderWorksonline.com or call 865-868-1800.