About Us

Crew

Mindi Gliatti

Mindi Gliatti

Mindi Gliatti

Mindi Gliatti is a co-owner and weekend Crew Chief for Bella Balloons.  She is a Mom of 2, wife, scuba diver, and a busy Pharmaceutical Industry Manager. 

"I get excited every time I see the balloons fly.  I've seen them launch hundreds of times and it just doesn't matter, I get excited again.  I'm so proud to be a contributor to a company that brings so much happiness to so many lives. Please come celebrate your important events with us.  Our team will take great care of you and help you make a lasting memory."

Brian Graham

Brian Graham

Brian Graham

"My son Kyle and I took our first balloon flight aboard Miss Scarlet with Mike Gliatti in 2007. I have been addicted to hot air ballooning ever since.  After just moments of leaving the ground, I knew this was something I had to do. I purchased a 90,000 Cubic foot Aerostar, named her Destiny and I began taking my student Pilot lessons with Bella Balloons later that same year. I am now a Private Pilot and Crew Chief for Bella Balloons. I love every minute of it. I have had such a great time with the entire team at Bella Balloons. What a great extension to my family!!

I am married to Kristel and have 2 great kids Kyle and Hailey. When I am not spending time with my family or flying balloons, I Maintain Critical Equipment for a 50k square foot server room in Blue Ash, Ohio. I like to hike, camp, boat, swim or really just about anything outdoors.

I look forward to meeting all of the guests that join us here at Bella Balloons. This is a once in a lifetime event for most people.  I really enjoy making this special occasion memorable for you, whether it be an anniversary, birthday, engagement or just because you have always wanted to fly in a balloon."

Michelle & David Heusinkveld

Michelle & David Heusinkveld

Michelle & David Heusinkveld

"We are David and Michelle Heusinkveld.  We started crewing for Bella Balloons in May of 2012.  It all started when balloons would land around our subdivision and we would jump in the car and go help them pack up.  We both enjoyed it so much that we contacted Mike Gliatti and asked him if he needed more crew and here we are today enjoying every minute. 

We have three wonderful daughters, Megan 19, Kelli 16, and Ashley 13.  David is Director of Commercial Real Estate at Hills Real Estate Group, Michelle is a real estate agent for Sibcy Cline.  We enjoy watching Kelli and Ashley play soccer, (David is the coach), and watching Megan ride horses.

We love being able to make the ballooning experience enjoyable and memorable experience for all of the passengers, and working with all the wonderful pilots.  We think the best experience is when the passengers get out of the balloon and look and say “That was the best time ever”.  We know then, we have done our job well." 

Chris Jessee

Chris Jessee

Chris Jessee

“I  began my ballooning experience as a volunteer for the Ohio Challenge event in 2010.  It was a wonderful way to get started due to the frequent flights, accessibility to the pilots and the ability to get hands on with the many different types of ballooning equipment.   Through the Ohio Challenge I was invited onto a competition balloon team and get to travel to various other balloon competitions throughout Ohio.   In 2013, after daydreaming about it every day on the way to work, I decided that I wanted to become a competition pilot.  In my quest to gain experience in the sport more quickly, I was introduced to one of the pilots at Bella Balloons and was lucky enough to be accepted onto the team.  The pilots at Bella Balloons are true professionals and demonstrate it with their knowledge of ballooning, safety standards and outstanding accommodation they provide to each of the guests.  A balloon ride is a once in a lifetime experience and the team at Bella will treat it as an experience you will remember for the rest of your life.

When not crewing with the Bella Team, my family and I travel to competitive balloon events with “the Squallee” which is our family balloon. We enjoy sharing the beauty and fun that is hot air ballooning with everyone.  I see ballooning as a valuable educational tool and a fantastic opportunity to create wonderful family memories.”

Jack Kinsinger

Jack Kinsinger

Jack Kinsinger

My wife and kids went ballooning for the first time in 2012 and within a month I was crewing for Bella Balloons.  I was intrigued by the process and interested in the mechanics of ballooning.  I love meeting all of the people who take flights and feed off of their excitement and enthusiasm for this new adventure.  It has been great working with the people of Bella Balloons because they have a great sense of humor, are knowledgeable and always professional.

I am an Industrial Arts teacher at Sycamore Junior High School and am married with three kids.  They keep me busy with sports including but not limited to soccer, hockey, volleyball, basketball, gymnastics, skiing, snowboarding, boating, kayaking and bicycling.  We enjoy the great outdoors through hiking and camping and travel when we get the chance.

Dan McCormick

Dan McCormick

Dan McCormick

"My first experience with ballooning came in 2007 when I arranged a surprise birthday flight for my wife Debbie with Bella Balloons. We quickly recognized Mike and Mindi Gliatti as our kind of people and accepted an invitation to "crew" for Bella flights. What a great activity for a couple-Deb drives, I navigate and we chase balloons across S.W. Ohio enjoying beautiful sunrises and sunsets, and meeting some really great people along the way. It wasn't long before Mike surprised me with the suggestion that I should become a pilot. Never in my wildest imagination did I picture myself flying anything beyond a PlayStation. I now find myself with my Private Pilot license and a balloon of mine own named "Suncatcher".


Debbie McCormick

Debbie McCormick

Debbie McCormick

"My adventure in ballooning started in August 2007 when my husband Dan surprised me with birthday flight. After that one amazing flight with Bella Balloons we were both hooked. Not long after, Dan and I became Crew Chiefs for Bella Balloons. I thoroughly enjoy every opportunity to help create a one-of-a-kind experience for those who charter a flight with Bella Balloons. Participating in ballooning as a Crew Chief has become my favorite way to spend a sunrise or a beautiful fall evening. These friendships will last a lifetime.

In real life, I'm the Director of Technology for a software publisher. I'm an avid cyclist and love spending time outdoors. My husband Dan and I have one daughter and two big lovable Labrador Retrievers. Our home in Clearcreek Twp. is often the site of unannounced balloon landings. We love that!!

Over the years our addiction to ballooning and to Bella Balloons continues to grow. Dan and I have purchased our own balloon, and in 2010, and Dan became a licensed private pilot."

Dave Parker

Dave Parker

Dave Parker

"Hi my name is Dave Parker, and I’ve been involved in hot ballooning for 22 years. I have participated in events ranging from weekend balloon rallies to National Competitions.   I have been with Bella Balloons for 9+ years.  This is not work for me-this is fun, it is leisure, stress relieve, a great opportunity to meet new people.  I enjoy the opportunity to share events with our passengers.  Whether it’s a birthday, anniversary, marriage proposal, or just checking off an item off of the Bucket List!! 

I like to use humor to help put our passengers at ease, as they are getting ready for their hot air balloon journey.   I look forward to meeting you and helping you enjoy your balloon experience.  This is truly a family owned and operated business.  When your flight is finished, we want you to feel like a member of our family. Your safety and fun is always our first priority.

So, hope to see you soon!"

 

Gretchen and Jerry Sabin

Gretchen and Jerry Sabin

Gretchen and Jerry Sabin

Gretchen and Jerry Sabin have been chasing local balloons for several years and finally got on board with Bella in 2012. Following Bella's beautiful balloons is exciting for the whole family and you'll often see the boys at landings, even if Jerry and Gretchen aren't on the schedule!

"Our boys have learned so much about weather, science and navigation on our evening adventures. And the pilots with Bella Balloons are great educators. You'll learn so much on your flight and enjoy the gorgeous Ohio landscape."

Jerry and Gretchen live in Miami Township with their sons, Josh, Will and Zach. Jerry works for RNET Technologies and Gretchen is at home with the the boys. If they aren't chasing balloons they are probably at a local high school football game or traveling to an OSU or ND game.

"The Ohio Challenge is one of our favorite events because there are so many scheduled flights and so much for the kids to experience. Bella is a big part of the fun at that event."

Kerry Saylor

Kerry Saylor

Kerry Saylor

"I became involved in ballooning in 2002 - about a year and a half after my wife and I had our first child. Our babysitter was the daughter of a local balloon pilot who now flies for Bella Balloons - Ron Terranova. It only took one flight and I was hooked! From there, I began crewing for Ron as much as I could. While doing this, I got to know other pilots and began crewing for them as well. So much fun!

"I met Mike while on his first balloon flight and even crewed with him on several occasions. Shortly after the inception of Bella Balloons, Inc. in 2007, I was invited to share the experience of ballooning and make Bella Balloons the most memorable experience for everyone who flew with them. I have learned much over the years and passed on much of my experience and training to other Bella crew. The one thing I enjoy the most - each flight is unique in its own way. New people, new flight path, new landowners... Such an exciting adventure you must experience on your own! If this is your first ballooning experience, check out my website and understand what to expect for your flight:  www.meandmyballoon.com."  Hope this memory lasts a lifetime!  

"When not ballooning, I am an Technical Director for Logic Technology, Inc. - an IT Consultancy headquartered in Schenectady, NY and offices in Blue Ash, Greenville, & Atlanta. I am also a father of 2 children - both now in high school and husband to a wife that understands my addiction to Ballooning!"

 

Chuck Mangold

Chuck Mangold

Chuck Mangold

I began my flying career in 1990 when I learned to fly in a Cessna 152.  I then spent the next 25 years flying for the Air Force.  Over the years the Air Force sent me to 6 continents and 80+ countries.  By then end of my career I had over 4,000 hours, mostly in the Lockheed C-130.

 While living in Albuquerque, NM in 2006, a hot air balloon landed in the park behind my backyard.  I went out and helped the pilot take down the balloon until his ground crew arrived.  Days later I began balloon chasing for another team with my 4 year old daughter in tow.  After a few years the pilot I was crewing for told me that she would trade me the time that I spent crewing for her for pilot lessons in a hot air balloon.  Since I already had both military and FAA pilot licenses, the training time was minimal.  Within 6 months of my first lesson, I had received my FAA evaluation and was a hot air balloon pilot!

 I retired from active duty in 2014 and moved to Ohio in April 2015.  I work at Wright Patterson AFB as a test pilot.  I am one of a handful of retiree’s across the US that still get to fly USAF aircraft as a civilian.  I began crewing for Bella in the spring of that year as a way of meeting new people and learning the area.  I enjoy sharing our sport with first-time riders, and hope to make every flight educational, fun, and unforgettable.

 

Duane Wooton

Duane Wooton

Duane Wooton

Hi, my name is Duane Wooton, and I have been with Bella Balloons for 3+ years. By profession I have been in the Finance and Operations of the Healthcare industry for over 20 years. Ballooning is one of my hobbies. I am an aspiring hot-air balloon student pilot but also really enjoy crewing. Being a Crew Chief for Bella allows me the opportunity to meet great people, like yourself, assure that you have a wonderful ballooning experience, and assist the pilot with your flight!

I am married to my childhood friend Amy. We met when we were four years old, and we have three great kids. Our children are all now young adults and carving their own path in life. My other hobbies include bass fishing, remodeling and maintaining properties and I am very active in the Freemasons. I am a Past Master of Jefferson Lodge #90 and an Officer in the Gabriel Lodge of Perfection, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, Valley of Dayton.

I look forward to meeting you and assisting you on your balloon flight! Whether you are celebrating a special occasion or just checking off the bucket list, I look forward to the opportunity to be a part of your special day.

Edward Wright

Edward Wright

Edward Wright

My love for ballooning started 23 years ago when I was 12 years old. The U.S. Nationals Hot Air Balloon competition came to Middletown, Ohio and my parents volunteered as crew. One morning a very nice pilot asked if I wanted to come along and I of course said yes. I have been hooked ever since.
 
I enjoy all aspects of ballooning, especially the children who come running out of their homes to help when we land in their neighborhood. I have had the privilege of crewing all over from Canada to Texas for fun and competition. I love it, I mean why else would I get up at 4:30am?
 
When I am not ballooning, I am probably hanging out with my wife Kendal and my two year old daughter, Brynn. I am a financial advisor during the day, real estate investor and enjoy wood working when time allows.
 
I look forward to crewing for Bella Balloon flights because I get help people experience the sport I love.