Airshow returns to Binghamton on July 4th weekend.

The Triumphant Return of the Exciting Family Event in Broome County

(Written by David Hickling)

It’s back! Broome County Executive Debbie Preston recently announced that the Greater Binghamton Airshow will return to the skies after a five-year hiatus.

Since BGM’s last Airshow in 2009, not many days have passed when someone from the community hasn’t asked when the show was going to return to the skies of Binghamton. Unfortunately, during that time, a combination of construction projects and economic factors prevented the return of this popular event.

But that all changed when Tioga Downs Casino stepped up as the new presenting sponsor to revive the Greater Binghamton Airshow in 2014.

The news of Tioga Downs Casino’s involvement as the presenting sponsor for the 2014 Greater Binghamton Airshow has without a doubt been enthusiastically welcomed by the community. The airshow has always been one of the most anticipated summer events in Broome County in the past and it has been greatly missed.

The 2014 Airshow will be held July 4th and 5th at the Greater Binghamton Airport. It will feature the U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team, an astonishing 11 ship aerobatic team known as Team AeroDynamix, Historical War Birds from yesteryear and several aerobatic performers who will showcase unbelievable maneuvers with their high performance aircraft.

This year’s event also represents the return of a “Night Airshow”. On July 4th, the air show will begin in the evening and continue into the night. In a unique airshow experience, some of the  aircraft  have been modified to carry and launch fireworks and other pyrotechnic devices which will light up the night-time skies. Following the night aerobatic performances, a spectacular fireworks display will close out the evening.

Saturday’s airshow will be a traditional airshow that will be held during the daytime. The skies will be filled with incredible aerial performances airshow fans have come to love. What’s more, there will be plenty of room to set up lawn chairs to sit back, relax and enjoy the show!

This year for the first time airshow patrons will pay one price for both days’ events. Adult tickets will be $12 advanced purchase and $15 at the gate. Tickets for children 8 to 16 years of age will be $7 advanced purchase and $10 at the gate, children 7 and under will be free. Tickets may be purchased on-line, cash sales in the Aviation Administration Office at the airport starting in June and at yet to be announced area merchants. (Airshow website is under construction)

On July 4th, gates will open for the night show at 6:00 PM, opening ceremonies will commence at 8:00 PM. The night show will conclude with Fireworks at around 10:00 PM. Gates will open on Saturday July 5th at 10:00 AM with the opening ceremonies commencing at noon. The airshow will conclude at 4:00 PM.

To date, other local sponsors, such as BAE Systems of Endicott and McFarland-Johnson of Binghamton are also helping to make this year’s air show possible.

2014 greater Binghamton Airshow Tentative Schedule:

FRIDAY NIGHT:
1800 Gates Open
1955 Opening Ceremony
2000 Warbird Flight
2015 Bill Gordon Stearman
2025 Kevin Russo SNJ-6
2040 Andrew McKenna P-51
2051 Raiders Aerobatic Team
2112 Golden Knights Streamer Drop
2115 Team AeroDynamix
2135 Manfred Radius Sailplane Pyro
2150 US Army Golden Knights Night Pyro Jump
2210 Fireworks
2230 Gates close, night event ends

SATURDAY SHOW
1000 Gates Open
1255 Opening Ceremony
1300 Army Golden Knights flag jump w/national anthem
1308 Army Golden Knights Mass Exit Show
1321 Warbird Flight
1357 Bill Gordon PT-17
1410 Manfred Radius Sailplane
1425 Kevin Russo SNJ-6
1450 Andrew McKenna P-51
1500 Raiders Aerobatic Team
1520 Team AeroDynamix
1600 Airshow Ends

SEE YOU AT THE AIRSHOW!!!

2014BinghamtonAirshowLogo_FINAL

Honoring our Nations Veterans at BGM

 

Written by Jennifer Lasher

Honor Flight is a national organization that flies our honored veterans to Washington DC to visit the memorials that stand in their honor. On April 12th, the first Twin Tiers Honor Flight, a chapter of the national organization, departed Greater Binghamton Airport with over 75 veterans and their guardians to Washington DC. The veterans aboard this flight represented World War II, the Korean War and one terminally ill veteran from the Vietnam War.

Although the day started out with foggy skies the veterans never lost their smiles and waited patiently while the fog lifted so they could head down to DC.

The veterans were welcomed in Washington DC by the Fire Company at Dulles Airport who showed their thanks by displaying flags from their fire trucks and showering the plane with water as they arrived at the gate. Inside the terminal the veterans were greeted by the Washington DC Honor Flight members, along with several active duty military families.

Photo by Jen Lasher

They were shocked by the overwhelming gratitude they were shown as they exited the gate. But the welcoming did not stop there as the veterans were greeted by a local girl’s tennis team and employees of the airport. These veterans were thanked, hugged and treated like celebrities as strangers asked to have their pictures taken time and time again.

Once all the veterans were loaded onto the 3 busses that awaited them, they were off to see the sites. Their stops included: Photo by Jen Lasher

Arlington National Cemetery,

the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier,

the United State Marine Corps War Memorial, Photo by Jen Lasher

the Vietnam and Korean War Memorials,

Photo by Jen Lasher

Photo by Jen Lasher

and of course the World War II memorial.

      Photo by Jen Lasher    

 

Throughout the day, the guardians on the trip assisted the veterans with wheelchair needs; beverage and food needs; took pictures of them and for them and listened to their stories. The bond between the veteran and guardians blossomed and you could see it come through as they shared so many memories and heartfelt moments together.

 

Photo by Jen LasherPhoto by Jen LasherPhoto by Jen Lasher

When the day was completed, the veterans and their guardians boarded the plane to head back to Binghamton. When they arrived at Greater Binghamton Airport the Welcome Home Celebration that awaited them was more than any of them could have imagined. Bag Pipers, Honor Guards, American Legion Riders, Active Duty Soldiers, Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts and hundreds of community members made up the crowd waiting to welcome the veterans back.   Each veteran was announced by their guardian and loudly cheered for by the large crowd as they entered the hangar.

Photo by Jen Lasher
The Greater Binghamton Airport was pleased to be able to take part in such an awesome movement to thank the veterans who have made this country what it is. They are often called the greatest generation and, after experiencing this day, we can see why. They fought for freedoms yet discovered and for people that they didn’t even know.

Photo by Jen Lasher

To see more of the photographs from the Twin Tier Honor Flight follow this link: Twin Tier Honor Flight Photos

Jennifer Lasher is a Broome County Department of Aviation employee, a professional photographer and also took part in the Honor Flight trip from Binghamton to Washington DC.

Do you know a World War II Vet? Honor Flight comes to BGM in April 2014

The Greater Binghamton Airport is proud to be involved with the Honor Flight Network, a non-profit national organization that works to fly our nation’s veterans to Washington DC to visit the memorials erected in their honor.
Honor flight
There is no cost to the veterans to participate in this program. Honor flight arranges for air and ground transportation as well as meals for selected veterans to enable them time to visit and reflect at their memorial. Priority for these trips is reserved for World War II veterans, along with those from other wars who may be terminally ill. Veterans of other wars are accommodated when space is available. 

DeAnna Deneen, who has recently created the Twin Tiers Hub for the Honor Flight Network, has indicated that she would like to use BGM as the hub airport for the Twin Tiers program. Of course we were very excited to be involved with such a positive program. The Greater Binghamton Airport will assist in arranging air transportation and with the logistics of the departure and arrival from BGM. We will also work as an ambassador of the Twin Tiers Honor Flight program by spreading the word and helping to locate potential qualified veterans. 

The first Honor Flight trip for our community is scheduled for April 12, 2014. At this time we have approximately 27 veterans lined up to participate and are expecting to add more as we reach out and spread the word throughout our region. Each veteran also has a guardian that acompanies them.  The charter flight can hold 100 passengers so there is plenty of room for more veterans. 

To get an application or more information please email Dave Hickling, Deputy Commissioner of Avaition at Aviation@co.broome.ny.us .   Help us to honor those who have fought for our freedom, share this with your friends.

Written by David Hickling, Deputy Commissioner of Aviation.

 photo from briebart.com