Air Display Hot Air Balloon Team
Kenneth (Ken) H. Rolland, Founding Member
Ken has been flying hot air balloons for more than three decades. During this time he has flown thousands of passengers
and trained many balloon Pilots.
His local flying is in the vicinity 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 more than 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 web site. He is very grateful for the photos sent in from colleagues, past clients, crew and spectators.
Balloon Pilots need to be licensed and deemed medically fit. The Pilot needs to understand what is required to keep their license
and ratings current. Pilots must also maintain their aircraft's airworthiness. Balloons that carry passengers for hire in Canada must be certified every year or every 100 hours of
flight (whichever comes first) by a Transport Canada certified Aircraft Maintenance Engineer.
In addition to the normal 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 (Aircraft Maintenance Engineer) license by Transport Canada. This enables him to perform annual
airworhiness inspections of Canadian registered, hot air balloons. He is also gearing up to be able to provide maintenace and repairs of hot air balloons as well.
Ken is a member in good standing with the Balloon Federation of America (BFA), the British Balloon and Airship Club (BBAC) and the
Canadian Owners and Pilots Association (COPA). On-line information about these associations may be found on the Air Display "LINKS (LTA Aviation)" page.
Flying hot air balloons is not a one person show. It takes three Crew and a Pilot to inflate and launch a
The following photos are Crew Chief members of the Air Display Hot Air Balloon Team.
Ballooning is an inexact science because balloons fly with the speed and direction 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 riders.
Balloons fly in the direction and speed of the wind. Chasing a balloon can be a very interesting activity and often requires the use of maps
and radios. Pilots flying as the crow (so to speak) and the Crew needing to follow the road, can lead to some challenging pursuits.
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
If you want to get involved as 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.
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 and is always on the lookout for other like minded individuals. Please contact Air Display
if you are interested in participating as Crew.