It was a typical blustery Kansas day on the first day of school for the Wellington Christian Academy. After hours filled with meeting new teachers and classmates, the student body gathered outside for their annual event — the balloon release.

It was a typical blustery Kansas day on the first day of school for the Wellington Christian Academy. After hours filled with meeting new teachers and classmates, the student body gathered outside for their annual event — the balloon release.

Globes of color darted back and forth in the wind, bright brilliant colors of red, blue, green and yellow precariously staying put with only the help of a thin string and the strong, small hands of its corresponding student.

On each string was attached a simple note asking that if the balloon were found, that a note be sent to the school.

In a countdown, the balloons were released in celebration of a new school year, traveling northward beyond the school and Wellington and out of sight — until now.

Three of the balloons were found in Humboldt — about three hours away in southeast Kansas. A couple found them on their farm weeks after school started. Tangled up together, the triad of balloons belonged to fifth graders, Leanne Neal, Mallory Barker and Saige Masonhall.

Steve and Darla Korf of Humboldt, found the balloons on their farm three miles south of town.

“We hope your year is off to a good start and that you are studying hard. It was fun being part of your project,” the couple wrote the three girls.

In all the years of doing the balloon release, none have ever been found, Wellington Christian Academy Principal Irene Myers said — or at least no balloons were reported found.

The students were surprised and aglow at the news of their balloons being found by strangers nearly 150 miles away.

“We thought they would pop in the air, that they would get stuck on a phone wire or something,” Leanne said.

“I thought they would go to Wichita. I didn’t think they would go that far,” Saige said.

The single correspondence from the couple will probably be answered by the three, who are wanting to write back and maybe start a friendship with their far-away finders.

“I want to...I think it would be cool,” Leanne said.

The three are hoping next year, their balloons will reach higher heights.

“I hope farther,” Mallory said.

“Yeah, that would be cool,” Saige said.

Wellington Daily News