A sunny, windless Monday morning provided the perfect conditions for hot-air balloon rides at Centre USD 397 schools. The multicolored balloon rose high above the treetops and could be seen by travelers on U.S. 56/77. It was provided by Great Plains Balloon Club of Topeka.
Students were paired with buddies and divided into four groups to ride in small bunches in the wicker basket attached to the balloon. The balloon was tethered to several vehicles and reached a height of 30 feet during flight before settling back to the ground.
The event heralded the coming of Red Ribbon Week, Oct. 20 to 27, and featured a morning of activities geared to encouraging students to prevent bad behaviors such as abuse of drugs and alcohol, uncontrolled anger, bad habits, and bullying.
While some students lined up for the balloon ride, others played games, designed murals, decorated doors, or planted tulip bulbs.
During Red Ribbon Week students will dress each day to conform with a specific theme: Monday, “Follow your dreams” (dress as in your dream career); Tuesday, “Don’t get tied down with drugs” (wear neckties); Wednesday, “Don’t sweat it, don’t do drugs” (wear sweats and be comfy); Oct. 25, “Turn your back on drugs” (wear your shirt backward); Oct. 26, “Celebrate being drug free” (No school!).