The Year 2015 seems on track to be the biggest and best ever for The Great Georgia Air Show, which has been hosted since 1998 at Peachtree City’s Atlanta Regional Airport – Falcon Field.
The very big deal this year is the fact that the U.S. Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron, better known as the “Blue Angels,” will be the featured performers when the show comes back to town for the weekend of Oct. 31 and Nov. 1. Not since the air show hosted the Canadian Forces “Snow Birds” Air Demonstration Squadron back in 2000 has there been this level of community excitement about an upcoming air show, and organizers say they expect the upcoming event to surpass the 2000 one.
It’s especially good timing to have such a popular act as the Blue Angels this year, and for The Great Georgia Air Show to be their exclusive hosts in the Atlanta area for 2015, because the air show organization, which distributes its excess revenue to other non-profits in the area, actually lost a little bit of money on its 2014 event.
Several local vendors were contacted by air show representatives after the 2014 event and told that, while they would be paid in full as soon as possible, there was not enough money left over immediately to pay all of the bills.
Air show spokesman Tony DellaTorre said a lack of advance ticket sales, a long school holiday weekend and surrounding bad weather created a perfect storm to negatively affect ticket sales, and with a lower attendance came lower spending during the event.
DellaTorre says the air show team this year is adjusting the game plan accordingly, and he says much more effort will be placed on selling advance tickets and as well on raising local and regional sponsorships. Having the Blue Angels on board this year will help, he says. As well, he says he hopes this year will bring enough revenue to not only give a good portion back to the community, but also to set up a rainy-day fund to buffer future air shows.
As for the unpaid vendors, they’ll be compensated when the first of the revenue arrives, says DellaTorre.