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5th-grader rides in hot air balloon after winning essay contest

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A young contest winner got to ride in a hot air balloon after winning first prize in a statewide essay contest.  

Fifth-grade student Peter Clear, 11, wrote an essay called “What the American Flag Means to Me.”

A panel of judges voted his as the best out of the thousands of entries.

For his reward, Peter got to ride in the balloon with the people from the Quick Chek New Jersey Festival of ballooning.

VIDEO: Young essay contest winner gets ride in hot air balloon.

 “That was my first and I'm going to go up a second time because this time it was just for the press and really exciting, I learned about the hot air balloon, it was fun,” says Peter.

In his essay, Peter wrote about his ancestors arriving to America on the Mayflower, as well as the time he was able to raise the flag at Fort McHenry.  

Peter and his entire class of fifth-graders will be the guests of honor at the festival coming up in a few weeks in Readington as part of the grand prize.

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