'Balloon Boy' Family Auctioning Aircraft for $1M to Aid Japan Relief Efforts

Heenes are asking $1 million for infamous balloon.

June 2, 2011 — -- Richard and Mayumi Heene, the parents behind 2009's infamous "Balloon Boy" news story, have put the balloon on the auction block and are asking $1 million for it.

On the family's website BalloonBoyFlyingSaucer.com, Richard Heene says the money will go to charity to help earthquake and tsunami recovery efforts in Japan. "We will receive nothing," Heene says in a posted video.

In the nearly five-minute YouTube video, Heene appears with his wife, Mayumi, and the "experimental flying saucer." He explains that he designed the balloon so that people could travel 50-100 feet off the ground to and from work at 35 mph.

"All you people out there who have casinos and hotels, maybe you're a collector, and you want to attract people to your place of business, you could perhaps bid on this and use it as a tax writeoff and then folks will come in to see the experimental craft," he says.

Bidders can try to win the balloon or pay $1 million to "purchase now." To participate in the auction, bidders must answer seven questions including "Do you believe flying saucers have been around for many years?"

Heene says the winning bidder paying $10,000 or more will also receive the balloon's original plans; the winning bidder paying $50,000 or more will get photographs of the Heene family building the balloon; and the bidder who pays $100,000 or more will get a DVD of the Heenes building the craft in their living room.

'Documented Media History'

"This is your chance to own a piece of documented media history while benefiting those in need," the website says.

In October 2009, the Heenes of Fort Collins, Colo., allowed authorities to believe that their 6-year-old son, Falcon, had floated away in a homemade helium balloon. Millions of people stayed glued to their TVs watching live footage of the balloon floating in the air.

Soon after the balloon landed with no one aboard, Falcon was found hiding in the rafters of the family garage.

After the little boy said during an interview that the family had hatched the balloon plan "for a show," celebration turned into an investigation of Richard and Mayumi Heene.

They were both eventually arrested. Under a plea deal, the two were sentenced to jail time and probation. They were also prohibited from making any money off the story until 2013.

California lawyer Perry Rausher told the Coloradoan that he was working with the Heenes on the balloon auction.

"Good luck out there," Richard Heene says at the end of the auction video. "Let's go help the Japanese out there."

ABC News staff and The Associated Press contributed to this article.