About 100 people turned out in Buena Vista to watch professional kitefliers show off their skills.
Kitefliers from all over the country came to Buena Vista Sunday for the city’s first kite festival.
The American Kitefliers Association has hosted its Blue Ridge Kite Festival in the Roanoke Valley for nearly two decades, according to organizers. But now they are trying to expand to other areas.
For many people, kite flying is a fun thing to do outside. But for others, it’s much more.
“I think there’s something very profound about looking up when you fly, just that whole uplifting sense,” said John Barresi, who has been flying kites professionally for 27 years, performing and training others.
Barresi traveled from Portland, Ore. to demonstrate his skills at the Buena Vista Kite Festival.
“Regardless of your particular beliefs or interests…you’re sharing the sky,” he said.
“We’re just a bunch of adults acting like kids flying kites,” said Donald Jacobs, Region 3 director for the American Kitefliers Association.
Jacobs said his group has members of all ages. He said he believes these kinds of events are great for tourism and introducing people to kite flying.
“You don’t have to sit in front of a computer screen and play video games all day,” Jacobs said. “You can have just as much fun outside as you can inside and actually more.”
Anyone can get in on the fun, Barresi said. He suggests people watch videos online to see which areas of kite flying they would be most interested in.
“Look for sport kites, quad line kites, dual line stunt kites, kite teams, indoor kite flying – indoor kite flying – no wind, amazing stuff,” Barresi said.
A new kite fly will be held in Bedford this Saturday at 11 a.m. at Falling Creek Park, according to the American Kitefliers Association.