Question: I only want to see the Hot Air Balloons, do I have to pay for polo too?
Answer: Unlike many Hot Air Balloon Festivals, we do not shut down during the day. We keep the festival going during the afternoon when most other festivals shut the gates. Polo is part of our afternoon schedule and all ticket holders can attend. Hot Air Balloons are extremely weather contingent and only one portion of this fun festival. Come prepared to enjoy the entire festival! Come and enjoy a great day of food, drinks, polo, fashion, vendors and balloons!
Question: Do I have to pay for a child?
Answer: Children under 3 are free and do not need a pass. All other children will need a Kid’s Pass available for sale on the Ticket Page of each website.
Question: Is my dog allowed?
Answer: We are a pet friendly event but pets must be leashed at all times.
Question: Is this kid friendly?
Answer: We are a kid friendly event and welcome families to our grounds. We have a kids area at each event including bounce houses. Feel free to bring a ball or games to play as a family in our large grass areas!
Question: Do you allow tailgating?
Answer: We have many food and alcohol vendors on site and therefore do not allow outside tailgating. Outside food and alcohol is not allowed.
Question: Do I need to dress up?
Answer: Not at all. Many guests do pick out the ‘perfect’ outfit for this event, but just as many quests come casual. You should review the photo gallery online and it will give you a sense for how most of our guests dress.
Question: What is the main difference between VIP and other passes?
Answer: Read each ticket description clearly. We have ticket levels for all budgets and the higher the price the more the ticket covers.
Question: How can a Charity become involved with the event?
Answer: We are a private for profit event. That said, we do provide multiple opportunities for charities to get involved. If you would like to apply as a charity for participation please email us at polo@victorycup.org
Question: Can we bring blankets, lawn chairs?
Answer: Yes, and you are encouraged to do so! Each event is held on a large grass area. Coolers are not allowed, but blankets, chairs and lawn games are encouraged!
Question: If I do a private tent, can I bring my own alcohol, bar?
Answer: No. You must contact us and we will facilitate all bar services through our permit.
Question: What is a Tethered Balloon Ride?
Answer: Want to get that experience and “feeling” of a balloon flight without leaving the venue, then a Hot Air Tethered ride is a great way to enjoy the experience. A Tethered Ride gives riders a taste of Ballooning while anchored down to the ground by high-tensile strength ropes only floating up to 30-40 feet in the air. Passengers climb aboard the aircraft for a short ride. Tether Rides are a great way for small children or elders to experience a balloon ride, also ideal for people with fears of flying or heights. All passengers must be in good health, if you are pregnant, recently released from the hospital, have current broken bones or casts, you will not be able to qualify to purchase a ride. These balloons are not certified by the FAA to carry wheelchairs. The pilot will also be available to determine who can fly! Tethered rides are available for sale in advance online. Like all other Balloon Rides, tethered rides are also weather permitting; are on a first come, first serve basis and at the individual pilot’s discretion.
Question: What is a Night Glow?
Answer: Gather with thousands of spectators to experience these magical giants close-up as part of the the ever popular “Balloon Glow Show” each evening. A Balloon Night Glow is a gathering of hot air balloons that inflate at night. When the burners are ignited, the balloons come to life with brightly glowing colors and the roar of the burners. It’s a spectacular display of color and sound within the magical nighttime ambiance where families and children may walk up to the balloons to feel the heat from the burners it inflates the canopy and see first-hand the shapes and colors come to life. Watch as these colorful shapes float high above the crowd with music, lights and special effects that will be sure to bring smiles to all ages.
Question: We are vendors, when should we load in? Other details?
Answer: If possible, please setup on Thursday (10/11) from 7AM – 6PM or Friday, (10/12) from 7AM – 3PM. Anyone that is setting up Saturday morning, please be completely ready to vend by 6:59AM. Those teams arriving after 7 AM will have to pay a $20 parking fee and will have to carry their items from general parking area. This is not ideal, you want to avoid this. Tent sponsors, caterers and vendors please remember you must bring everything you need including ice, water, generators, garbage cans, bags, setup and prep areas etc. This is a huge field with no water and no electric. If you need to hookup to our generator there is a nominal $25 fee — please contact polo@victorycup.org for an invoice before the event. Also, after the event please leave your area as you found it. That means no damage, no trash and nothing left behind. If you do not clean up for yourself, we will be forced to clean up for you. The cleanup fee per space is $250.
Question: We are food vendors, how can we be involved?
Answer: The event will be on a ticketing system that attendees will purchase $3 tickets from a central location to redeem for food and alcohol. At the close of our event, and not before, we will cut you a check for 20% of the Total Value of the Tickets you collect. Please review the food vendor agreement and ensure that your signage reflects the number of $3 tickets required for each item. Our bar concessionaire will be selling all beverages, absolutely don’t sell water, juices, soft drinks, etc. Also, please review and abide all Health Department requirements.
Question: We are alcohol tasting partners, what do we need to know?
Answer: Alcohol tastings will occur in the Invite Only Hospitality Tent from 11AM – 4PM. Alcohol tastings must be true tasting sizes. Please review and abided by all Charleston County Health Department requirements. If you need to get in touch with someone for setup or day of the event you can contact Joe Bachmeier at (914) 406-5114 or Greg Ball at (917) 681-9302. You can also email polo@victorycup.org.
What do I get with my wristbands? While each event is a little different, here are some of the broad strokes for each level:
  1. Kids Pass – For kids Ages 3-17, grants them access to whichever area their guardians are in, ALL WEEKEND.

  2. Friday Night Pass – This Friday Pass includes access to the Friday night event 4pm to 9pm, LIVE BAND!, access to bars (no free drinks), hot air balloon glow and tethered rides available for sale (weather contingent),  and food vendors. Does not include parking, tethered rides or access for Saturday. Purchase parking, tethered rides and passes for Saturday in advance, online.

  3. Free Morning Hot Air Balloon Launch Pass – Many lucky attendees were able to get this FREE pass early on! This includes access to the Saturday morning Hot Air Balloon Launch (weather contingent) from 7:00 am until 11:00 am on Saturday morning only. Does not include parking, tethered rides or Tented Access for Saturday. Purchase parking, tethered rides and Tented Access Passes for Saturday in advance, online.

  4. All Day Hot Air Balloon Pass – Includes access to the grounds Saturday, and all vendors. Access to bars (no free drinks) and food trucks. Does not include parking, tethered rides or Tented Access for Saturday. Purchase parking, tethered rides and Tented Access Passes for Saturday in advance, online.

  5. General Admission Pass – Enjoy a private tent with seating and good view of polo and balloons. Includes access to private General Admission Tent on Saturday and the polo field and a private General Admission Bar (no free drinks), This GA Tented Area is for GA & VIP’s only and Hot Air Balloon Pass Holders do NOT have access to it. Rain or shine, you will have cover with tents and seating. Does not include parking or tethered rides. Purchase parking and tethered rides in advance, online. You can also upgrade this pass to VIP by using promotional code ‘VIP Upgrade’.

  6. VIP Golden Mallet Pass – Our most popular VIP Pass! This great pass includes complimentary alcohol tastings from 11am- 1pm on Saturday, in the Hospitality Tasting Tent in between the Golden Mallet VIP and Founders Area. This VIP pass also includes a catered lunch around 1 pm in the Golden Mallet Tent Area! You will enjoy private lounge areas in the Golden Mallet Tent Area. Rain or shine, you will have cover with tents and seating. Private access (paid for) bars. Prime views of polo and hot air balloon festival on Saturday.  Rain or shine, you will have cover with tents and seating. Does not include parking or tethered rides. Purchase parking and tethered rides in advance, online. You can also upgrade this pass to Founder’s Lounge Access by using promotional code ‘VIP Upgrade’.

  7. Farm to Table Dinner Pass – Includes Golden Mallet VIP Ticket for Saturday and access to the exclusive Farm to Table Dinner. This pass receives a Golden Maller VIP wristband, and will be checked in by name for the dinner. The Dinner is hosted in the Founder’s Lounge Area, look for the pink tent.

  8. Founders Lounge Pass – Private Lounge area capped at 300 guests. If you are going to be a bear, be a Grizzly! This is our highest level VIP and is ALL INCLUSIVE. An all inclusive private bar throughout the day (11:00 am until 4:00 pm) this pass ALSO includes a catered lunch PLUS the Farm to Table Dinner. Both will be served in the Founder’s Lounge Area, look for the pink tent. Open bar (in founder’s area only) from 11am-4pm on Saturday including the Jack Rudy Craft Cocktail bar in the Founder’s Area. Best views of polo at the event. Access to high end bathroom trailer. Parking is also included with the Founder’s Pass. Tethered rides are not included in this pass, and must be purchased in advance online.

  9. Tethered Rides: If the weather cooperates, tethered rides will be available starting around 4pm – 9pm on both Friday night and Saturday night. It will be first come, first serve and sold for $30 per person. Arrive early. Listen for announcements in the stands at the Winner’s Circle Centerfield for updates. Please understand that Hot Air Balloons are extremely weather sensitive. Even mild winds can cause safety issues. Come prepared to enjoy the day and take part in the festival.

Question: I received a free pass and want to know if that includes a free trip in a Hot Air Balloon? And can I float away for several hours or days...stopping in Miami?
Answer: NO. Admission passes (claimed, free or paid) DO NOT include Hot Air Balloon rides. Rides must be purchased separately. And even when purchased they are tethered rides not a cross country jaunt. If we let every balloon float away on the first tour the other 1,000 attendees would never get a chance at a ride. ALSO IMPORTANT: Balloon activations are weather contingent and are held early morning and late afternoon into the evening. All guests were informed online, in email and on social media to not come midday expecting to see balloons. If you would like a ‘real hot air balloon ride’ to ‘float away’ in a balloon it can be scheduled and the cost is around $1,500 for a group of 4 email us at polo@victorycup.org if interested. Otherwise, the $30 tethered ride may be your best option and must be purchased in addition to your admission and parking pass.
Question: What are the general guest policies?
Answer: No outside food or drink is allowed. I further understand that this is a private event, held on private property. I fully understand I am a guest of the organizers and the property owner and can be expelled at anytime, and am legally responsible for any damage. There are absolutely no refunds under any conditions.
Question: What happens if the weather does not cooperate?
Answer: Hot Air Balloons are extremely weather contingent and only one portion of this fun festival. Let’s pray for the best but come prepared for high winds or bad weather. Let us make one thing abundantly clear: if there is a safe way to execute the hot air balloon activations WE WILL DO SO. If those balloons are not in the air it is for your SAFETY. PLEASE understand that the organizers will do their best to activate hot air balloons and appreciate the pilots and crews are on site during specified times, but also understand the organizers cannot control Mother Nature nor should they tether or launch balloons in dangerous conditions.
Question: How often are the balloon activations affected by weather?
Answer. A perfect day is rare, as is a complete wash out. That said, our hot air balloon activations can be grounded or limited due to winds etc and often are. Hot Air Balloons are EXTREMELY weather contingent and may be grounded for safety or weather, therefore we ask that you come prepared to enjoy the entire festival (including polo) with or without the balloons. If you’re only purpose for attending is the balloon activation alone you may be very disappointed if we get bad weather.
Question: The weather seemed fine to me, why couldn’t they get the balloons up?
Answer: We spend $200k-$300k per event, including travel and lodging for our pilots. Let us make one thing abundantly clear: if there is a safe way to execute the hot air balloon activations WE WILL DO SO. If those balloons are not in the air it is for your SAFETY. PLEASE understand that the organizers will do their best to activate hot air balloons and appreciate the pilots and crews are on site during specified times, but also understand the organizers cannot control Mother Nature nor should they tether or launch balloons in dangerous conditions.
Question: I understand the weather, but I wasn’t able to complete my Hot Air Balloon Ride. What do I do?
Answer: If Hot Air Balloon Tethered Rides cannot activate due to safety or weather, PLEASE understand that no refunds will be awarded (as explained online, on social media and via email). Instead of a refund, and as clearly advertised, all Tethered Ride Pass Holders will be automatically upgraded on Saturday to a casual private dinner field side (children are welcome). There are absolutely no refunds under any conditions. Our policy is abundantly clear in all communications. Furthermore, it is your responsibility to actually attend that dinner as scheduled.
Question: My pass is a VIP Pass! When should I arrive for lunch and/or dinner and how about drinks?
Answer: The VIP areas (both the Founder’s Area and the Golden Mallet Tent) open at 11AM on Saturday and close around 5PM same day; this includes VIP Open Bar Access for Founder’s Guests. Please, if you are a Founder’s Lounge Guest do not harass our bar staff at closing time. This is done to adhere with Alcoholic Beverage Commission Law. The Founder’s Bar is open for at least 5 hours. Golden Mallet Guests have access to the alcohol tasting area from 11AM to 1PM. Please arrive promptly and enjoy this perk! The Founder’s Lounge casual lunch is served around 11AM and the Golden Mallet casual lunch is served around 1PM. Founder’s can also attend the Golden Mallet activations. Founder’s fieldside casual dinner is served around 4:30PM. Some locations or times may change due to weather, etc but will be announced.
Question: So MAD! I’m calling my Congressman! I know I have read at least a dozen times that there are
NO REFUNDS. But I want a REFUND right NOW!
Answer: Please understand there are absolutely no refunds awarded under any conditions. We will work with you to make your experience even better next time, but we have been doing these events for years and our policy stands. ALL purchases and sponsorships are final. There are absolutely no refunds under any conditions.