FLINT TWP. — If you think balloons are just for children’s parties, you should see some of Susana Wight’s bright ideas.
Owner of Airhead Balloons, based out of her Flint Township home, Wight’s balloon artistry is turning up at many fashionable adult events around town.
Just this past weekend, she did the Tux and Tennies Gala at Sloan Museum, a fundraiser for Whaley Children’s Center. Wight dressed up the party areas with three-foot round balloons floating from the ceiling, balloons strung like pearls from arches and tree-like table centerpieces fashioned with balloons as foliage.
On Saturday, she created the Michigan maize and blue and Michigan State green and white sculptured letter backdrops for the Battle of the Mitten Rooftop Tailgate Party on the roof of the Rutherford garage in downtown Flint, also a fundraiser for Whaley.
Wight’s work was also featured at the recent Financial Plus Federal Credit Union “Pink Night’’ fundraiser for breast cancer and during Swartz Creek’s Hometown Days.
Coming up Saturday from 3-8 p.m., Wight will reach into her bag of tricks for balloon pumpkins, ghosts and other Halloween themes and color schemes to outfit the Fall Family Fun Day at Montrose Orchard, sponsored by the Swartz Creek Chamber of Commerce.
Decor does not have to be limited to a balloon on a string, Wight said of conventional uses.
“There is so much more you can do with balloons. It’s an inexpensive way to make a statement.’’
Wight came onto the local events scene in a big way back in April when she did the decor for ABC 12 Family Expo in Grand Blanc . It went over big and business has been booming ever since.
“It blew up literally, which was great.’’ said Wight. “I wasn’t looking to start a business. I enjoy doing it.”. She and her husband own a Flint Township medical consulting business that is helping doctors go paperless, she said.
An active board member of the Swartz Creek Chamber of Commerce, Wight credits the chamber’s networking opportunities as a big part of her business success. She chose the name for her business with help from a marketer at Financial Plus Credit Union.
Social networking is another boost.
“Facebook is my portfolio right now,’’ she said of her online photo showcase.
Wight takes on events big or small from galas and weddings to supplying do-it-yourselfers who just want to buy unusual balloons and do the work themselves.
Wight finds new ideas to launch on the local events scene by attending training events such as Ballooniversity in Chicago last July and The World Balloon Convention coming up in Texas in March.
“I’m actively involved in keeping up with trends and color schemes and newest products,” she said. “People like new techniques not seen President: Rick Burrough Group Publisher: Wes Smith Chief Financial Officer: Dale Phillips Advertising Director: Karen Fitzgerald Managing Editor: Gary Gould Editor: Jeff Hogan Staff Writers: Amanda Braniecki, Nancy Elliot, Phil Foley, Jacob Hunsanger, Amanda Durish, Rhonda S. Sanders, Carrie RaCosta Sports Editor: Lisa Paine Sports Writers: Michael Selecky, Erik Hohenthaner, Dan Nilsen, Brandon Pope Senior Account Manager: Tom Reynolds Account Executives: Mike Gonzales, Kim Stanbury, Karla Irwin, before with balloons in our area.”
Besides liking to learn, Wight is passionate about what she does.
“When you love what you do, it shows in your work,’’ she said.
She can put a balloon canopy over a dance floor or put lights inside balloons. She does bouquets, centerpieces, arches, columns, topiaries and specialty balloons such as cake-shaped ones for a cake shop She can stretch her creativity as far at the client’s budget will allow, she said.
For now Wight works with two on-call employees but hopes someday to locate outside of her home. But in today’s economy, it is an unnecessary expense, she said, noting the bulk of her supplies are delivered to the event site.
Wight started balloon decorating more 20 years as a high school student in her native Southern California where she worked for a balloon service.
Wight can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 810-610-6644.