Great food, amazing friends, and hot air balloons; all important components that go into creating an amazing memory for our au pairs! AuPairCare Area Director Ula Afgan introduced our au pairs to the Preakness Hot Air Balloon Festival in Maryland where the group got to embrace the local culture together while enjoying the day in the most colorful way! Au pairs Valeria from the Ukraine, Lenka from the Czech Republican, Ellie from El Salvador, Tatiana from Columbia, Hazal from Turkey, and Victoria and Keyla of Columbia all joined in along with some local host families.
Area Director Ula thought it was a wonderful idea and her au pairs agreed, stating that:
It was great idea to make the au pair meeting at the balloon festival. We made a ton of colorful pictures and had a fun experience. It’s was great to meet everyone there!
The Preakness Balloon Festival is a forty-year-old annual event where many Maryland locals come out to celebrate the night with food vendors, games, live music, and the unique coloring of 15 different hot air balloons. The au pairs really enjoyed themselves as they experienced the festivities with delicious American fair food while basking in the warm Maryland sun. Au pair Hazal had such a wonderful time that she had even shared with the group about how the Hot Air Balloon festival reminded her of a similar one that happened in her own home country of Cappadocia, Turkey, saying that it reminded her of a “scenic fairytale-like rocky volcanic setting.”
One of our au pairs even had this to say:
This local family festival gave us not only a sense of belongingness to the local community but also a chance to chat and get to know each other better.
Overall, the event was a success as the group sang happy birthday to one of our au pairs while counting down to a Balloon glow, where each balloon lit up one by one – talk about magical! The night ended as unforgettable memories were made to the tune of laughter and new friendships.