Westmoreland County Air Show planners eye 2014 edition
As the summer passes without a Westmoreland County Air Show this year, officials are beginning the preliminary planning to stage the two-day event at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport in 2014.
“Of course, we have to look at our finances, if we can afford it,” said Anthony Ferrante, promotions committee chairman with the Westmoreland County Airport Authority.
The June 2012 event drew about 75,000 spectators, but the air show was canceled for 2013 because the Air Force ended public performances by the Thunderbirds precision jet team because of federal sequester budget cuts.
The show costs about $300,000 to organize, and attendance depends on the draw of a centerpiece military performance and good weather, said Don Rossi, authority chairman.
“If the weather doesn't break your way, then, you lose,” he said.
Ferrante said the air show, which returned to the Unity airport in 2011 after a 10-year hiatus, acts more as a community outreach and open house for the airport than a money-maker for the authority.
“What it does is show off the airport; it's a big showcase,” he said.
Ferrante told the board at Tuesday's meeting that he plans to begin committee meetings to brainstorm ways to generate more revenue and make the 2014 Westmoreland County Air Show more efficient.
“The earlier you start, the more time you have to come up with all this,” he said.
Applications to the Department of Defense requesting military participation for a team like the Thunderbirds or Blue Angels, which have performed in years past, need to be submitted two years in advance, said Gabe Monzo, authority executive director.
A request is in for 2014, and another was submitted earlier this month for 2015, he said.
The applications do not require specific dates, other than to request an appearance during the summer season, depending on each team's availability, Monzo said.
In other business, a traffic record shows that 25,214 passengers passed through the airport in June, bringing the total to 114,802 so far in 2013. Since February 2011 when Spirit Airlines began its service to the airport, 325,471 passengers total have flown in and out.
“It's a lot of people moving through here,” Rossi said. “It's fun to be here when the terminal's full.”
Monzo said fewer than 50 parking spaces were open, and 80 vehicles were parked in the grass on Saturday.
The airport has space for about 1,100 passenger vehicles, including the 250 spaces added in June.
Monzo said a charter flight with 150 passengers left Friday along with the four regular Spirit flights to Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Myrtle Beach and Dallas-Fort Worth.
Mondays and Fridays are the busiest days at the airport, he said.
Stacey Federoff is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-836-6660 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Hempfield Area High School senior Richason creates Before I Die wall in Greensburg
- Allegheny man Wedel charged with baseball bat, knife attack on former roommate
- Youngwood Fire Department to dedicate memorial at station
- Bushy Run Battlefield upgrades to include trail, signs, landscaping
- Historic Greensburg Art Center joins Cat’s Meow collection
- Greensburg police captain to attend highly selective academy
- Food drive volunteer in Westmoreland County has purse stolen
- Jeannette man pleads guilty to attempting to entice child in Louisiana
- Police on hunt for suspects in unrelated Penn Township, Manor cases
- Walker: Applebees to help Jacobs Creek Area Faith in Action
- Scholarship fund at St. Vincent to honor Kennametal exec