- Associated Press - Friday, April 15, 2016

LEXINGTON, Va. (AP) - Lexington has scrapped its longtime tradition of offering hot air balloon rides during its Fourth of July celebration.

The Roanoke Times reports (https://bit.ly/1SGqEpB ) the Lexington Sunrise Rotary Club decided to cancel the activity for the upcoming celebration after repeated weather-related cancellations over the years, along with rising costs of taking a ride in one of the balloons. An evening of musical performances will replace the hot air balloons.

Rotary President Matt Hayden says the balloon rides were popular, however the balloons were often grounded because of weather concerns. Last year, about $7,000 was returned to festivalgoers who had paid for the rides, only to be disappointed by cancellations.

Hayden says a Grammy-nominated group, The WannaBeatles, will perform at the festival, among other acts.

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Information from: The Roanoke Times, https://www.roanoke.com

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