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Why Choose Above & Beyond?

Price is always an important factor in choosing a Flight Provider, these days more than ever. But when it comes to safety and overall quality of the experience, don’t let price be your only deciding factor. Our Experience and Safety Record speaks for itself!

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Nick Hoffbauer, Pilot for Above & Beyond, has thirty years of wide-ranging experience in Hot Air Ballooning including:

Full time, FAA certified Commercial Pilot (Lighter Than Air) since 1982.

FAA Safety Counselor for Hot Air Ballooning since 1997.

Has operated the only local FAA certified Balloon Repair Station since 1992.

Safety Officer and Balloonmeister for the Indiana State Fair Hot Air Balloon Race since 1992, previous Balloonmeister at several other local and regional events.

With 2000 hours piloting five different categories of balloons, Nick and his experienced crew have maintained a perfect safety record.

Flight Instructor for over 25 years, training student pilots to attain the mental and physical skills needed to pilot hot air balloons.

Nick is a thirty-year member of the Balloon Federation of America, past President of the Montgolfier Society of Indiana, and member of the Central Ohio Balloon Club.

Frequent speaker at regional Balloon Safety Seminars on Pilot Decision Making, Pilot and Crew Safety and Hot Air Balloon Maintenance.

Over the years Nick has conducted hot air balloon advertising programs for such high profile companies as Conseco, Kodak, Habig Garden Shops, Hertz Car Rental, Indianapolis Monthly Magazine, MCL Restaurants and Marsh Supermarkets.

Ruthie Hoffbauer, Crew Chief for Above & Beyond, also has thirty years of experience in Hot Air Ballooning including:

Balloon Federation of America certified Master Crew Chief. Has crewed on many makes and models of balloons, for many pilots.

Event organizer for the Indiana State Fair Hot Air Balloon Race since 1992 and organizer for other local and regional balloon events.

Has received training as a Student Pilot in Hot Air Balloons.

Has held an FAA Balloon Repairman’s license since 1992.

Frequent speaker at regional Balloon Safety Seminars on Crew Safety. Trained in First Aid and CPR.

Ruthie is a thirty-year member of the Balloon Federation of America and past Vice President and Secretary of the Montgolfier Society of Indiana.


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When you book a flight with Above & Beyond, you are booking with a locally owned and operated company, not a nationwide broker. We do not accept nationwide ride certificates and we are not affiliated with these companies.

We believe customers are best served by buying and flying with local balloonists!

©2011 Above & Beyond Balloon Co. All Rights Reserved.