Blue Skies Ballooning :
Blue Skies Ballooning is owned and operated by Marlon Hodges and partner Julie Hodges-Campbell.
Marlon is actively involved in the day to day business of Blue Skies, as Director and Chief Pilot while Julie manages to work the bookings and admin around her antiques and collectables business. The Hodges – Campbell residence in Melbourne is a very busy household indeed!
Marlon caught the aviation bug very early in life while his Dad Frank was working in airfield construction in Northern NSW. He remembers hanging over the boundary fences watching strange and noisy aircraft take off and land for hours. It was even better when his Dad introduced him to the Pilots! Flying training in an old Piper followed as soon as he left school and got a job.
Many years later while working as a tour guide in Sydney he was introduced to Hot Air Ballooning, helping out as ground crew. Flying training soon followed, and a Commercial Balloon License obtained in 1988 Short touring stints for promotional balloons followed for the next few years. A request to put together a ballooning operation in the Yarra Valley in 1990 bought him South for a Year or so, then off to the Gold Coast to do more of the same!
The following years saw flying in Alice Springs, Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Echuca, Melbourne, and regular returns to the Yarra Valley.
Marlon is passionate about flying balloons, and flying safety, and reckons that Flying balloons in the Yarra Valley on a perfect Valley morning is about as good as it gets!
Julie joined the ballooning life, and has been active in ballooning business as ground crew, bookings, office admin (tidying up after Marlon) and catering- on occasions providing breakfast for 50 hungry ballooning guests in the bush in Alice Springs. Julies passion is antiques, and now has outlets in historic Yarra Glen and at Maling Road in Surrey Hills.
Julie has an extensive background in wholesale and hospitality as a past Owner/Operator of several cafes in Melbourne, Gold Coast and Echuca.
Julie still makes a mean Espresso!
For more info call our office on 03 8418 3187