045The QuickChek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning and PNC Bank brought a giant, 75-foot-tall hot air balloon to The Community YMCA’s Child Achievement Center in Matawan on Friday, June 5 to promote PNC’s “Grow Up Great” school readiness program.

Forty-five preschool children had the unique opportunity to step inside the balloon, inflated with cold air, as part of PNC’s “Grow Up Great” program, a $350 million, nationwide multi-year initiative that began in 2004 to support school readiness.

The children also enjoyed a lesson on the science of hot air ballooning from Festival executive producer Howard Freeman.