New Jersey Lottery Festival of Ballooning names new director

The Garden State’s two most popular summer events have a new director for 2022.

William Hobbs has been named festival director for the New Jersey Lottery Festival of Ballooning and for the Rock, Ribs & Ridges music and food festival.

Named the premiere family entertainment attraction in New Jersey by the USA Today Network and one of the Top 50 Festivals in America by MSN, the annual three-day ballooning festival launches July 29-31 from Solberg Airport in Readington. It will feature up to 100 sport and special shaped hot air balloons that will take flight twice each day along with daily headlining concerts. Festivalgoers can also enjoy a fireworks display, a nighttime hot air balloon glow, family entertainment and attractions, food and more.

A Montclair resident, Hobbs’ experience includes digital marketing, box office operations, vendor relations and volunteer staffing, as well as event administration, with events and organizations including the Blue Ridge Rock Festival, Suwannee Hulaween, FloydFest, Rooster Walk Music Festival and the 5 Points Music Foundation.

“The New Jersey Lottery Festival of Ballooning enjoys a long history of creating memories that last a lifetime for generations of families, and Rock, Ribs & Ridges offers a truly unique experience,” Hobbs said in a prepared statement.

The 12th annual Rock, Ribs & Ridges festival will feature three days of country, classic and Southern rock at the Sussex County Fairgrounds in Augusta. Festivalgoers will have the opportunity to eat barbecue served up by pitmasters from around the country, who will also participate in a juried rib cookoff.

Presented by Franklin Sussex Auto Mall, the outdoor concert will be held June 24-26. The festival offers VIP shaded seating, group table seating, as well as the opportunities for camping out and RV stays throughout the weekend.