A giant Elvis and a child in a wheelchair are among the new shapes set to take part in an annual hot-air balloon festival in New Mexico.
Hot air balloons were once used to transport people. They were in conventional shapes. Now balloon festivals specialise in having balloons of unique shapes and sizes. One such festival is the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.
The forty-first Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is scheduled to begin on Saturday with the launch of hundreds of hot-air balloons.
More than 550 pilots have signed up to fly balloons during the nine-day event. Other balloon shapes making their debut at the fiesta include an ice cream cone, an astronaut and Simba the lion.
Fiesta officials hope for better weather for the nine-day affair after wind and rains sidelined balloons for a few events last year, cutting attendance by about 100,000 visitors.AP