Hot Air Balloons
Hot Air Balloons


About Air Display Hot Air Balloon Team

Kenneth (Ken) H. Rolland
Founding Member

Ken has been flying hot air balloons for more than three and a half decades.  During this time he has flown thousands of passengers and trained many balloon Pilots.


His local flying is just north of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.  He also attends several community hosted, hot air balloon festivals.


Every year these balloon festivals take him across Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick.  He's been attending some of these events for over twenty-five years!


Ken also administers the Air Display Hot Air Balloon Team web site.  His background and experience provides the content for the Air Display site.  He is very grateful for the photos sent to him from colleagues, crew, past clients and spectators.

Balloon Pilots need to be licensed and deemed medically fit by Transport Canada.  The Pilot needs to understand what is required to keep their license, ratings and endorsements current.  Balloon owners  must also maintain their aircraft's airworthiness.  Balloons that carry passengers for hire here in Canada must be certified every year or every 100 hours of flight (whichever comes first) by a  Transport Canada certified Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (AME).


In addition to the privileges a Manned Free Balloon Pilot license provides, Ken also maintains a Balloon Pilot Instructor rating.  To help support balloon Pilot training and assist other balloon Pilots with their license and rating maintenance, Ken is an "Authorized Person" with Transport Canada.  More about balloon Pilot training can be found on the Air Display "TRAINING" page.


In 2015, Ken was issued an AME license by Transport Canada.  This enables him to perform annual airworhiness inspections, general maintenance and repair of Canadian registered, hot air balloons.


In 2017 Rolland Enterprises Inc. was issued an Approved Organization Cerificate by Transport Canada for the manufacture and certification of Aeronautical Products.  Currently, this approval is limited to Fantasy Hot Air Balloon systems.


Ken is a member in good standing with the Balloon Federation of America (BFA) and the  Canadian Owners and Pilots Association (COPA).  Links for these organizations and relevant Transport Canada web sites on Air Display's  "LINKS" page.

Flying hot air balloons is not a one person show.  It takes at least two Crew (usually three) and a Pilot to inflate and launch a balloon.

Ballooning is an inexact science because balloons fly in the direction and speed of the wind.  The Pilot and Crew never really know exactly where the balloon will land.  One thing is for sure though, balloons do not land at the same place they launched from so a recovery team (known as the Chase Crew) is required to retreive the aircraft and its occupants.

Chasing a balloon can be a very interesting activity and often requires the use of maps and radios.  Because balloons fly as the crow (so to speak) and the Crew must follow roads, some challenging pursuits can sometimes take place.  It's amazing how quickly an eight story, floating apartment building can disappear!

The following photos are some of the volunteer Ground Crew members who have supported the Air Display Hot Air Balloon Team for many years.  Their efforts are greatly appreciated!

The Air Display Hot Air Balloon Team is a group of over 70 volunteers across eastern Canada (Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick).  Most of the Team have been around hot air balloons for many years.  Some are Pilot's  themselves!  All are eager to trade their assistance for the chance to fly whenever basket space is available.

If you want to get involved as balloon crew, drop us line.  This is a very good way to get introduced to the sport, especially if you are wanting to learn how to fly and get a balloon of your own some day.

Air Display is privileged to have such dedicated and knowledgeable persons assisting.  It is a comfort knowing they are close at hand, ready to provide support whenever it is needed.

Air Display salutes its many volunteer team members.  Please contact Air Display if you are interested in participating on the Team.

Thank-you all!


Ken Rolland


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