Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Increased Frontier Airlines flights at Trenton Mercer Airport (KTTN) cause parking problems

EWING — Overloaded parking lots and a number of tickets on the windshields of illegally parked vehicles at the Trenton-Mercer Airport prompted the county freeholders last night to ask the administration to move quickly to come up with an ordinance for parking at the airport.

In recent weeks, as the airport’s only commercial carrier Frontier Airlines has expanded service to 10 destinations with an an average of five flights each day, county officials say parking at the facility has become an issue. Even with the freshly paved auxiliary lot and an additional long-term parking lot, spaces are few and far between.

“People are finding ingenious ways to park at this point,” Freeholder Andrew Koontz said. “Some of them are not legal. They are all over the place.”

Koontz reminded County Administrator Andrew Mair that the administration has said in the past that it would present a parking ordinance to the freeholders that could include such measures as parking enforcement and fees at the airport. No such measure has been drafted, Mair said. County officials have said there needs to be more parking built to accommodate the volume of cars for passengers on Frontier flights.

“We have talked to consultants about technologies for the operations of the lot,” Mair said. “This is a large project and it is going to take a while to materialize.”

Freeholder Lucylle Walter suggested that the administration should consider a short-term ordinance that could be implemented while the details of what to do with the parking problem long-term is still being considered.

“I think at this point, we are not looking at a permanent solution, but something that would stand up to the situation there is now,” said Freeholder Anthony Carabelli.

Freeholder Samuel Frisby suggested that before the county spends money on any electronics or equipment to regulate how long cars are in the lot or a fee structure for the lots, there might be a time limit implemented that could be enforced with something as simple as chalk marks on the tires of cars to monitor how long they have been parked.

Frisby said Frontier is marketing the airport as one with cheap parking that is close to the terminal, and if people return from their vacations in Florida or elsewhere to a parking ticket on their car, as some have recently, parking becomes a negative for the airport, rather than a draw.

“You want to do this right, you want to look at all the options,” he said. “You don’t want to create negatives.”

Mair said he would report back to the board on the status of a parking ordinance during their meeting later this month.

Last night, the board also gave preliminary approval to an ordinance that would lower the speed limit along Broad Street and Louellen Street in Hopewell Borough where increased pedestrian and vehicle traffic has caused problems.

If passed, the ordinance would allow for the installation of digital signs along the roadways that would alert drivers to how fast they are driving. The ordinance also would lower the speed limit from 35 mph to 30 mph from West Broad Street to Louellen Street and again from Princeton Avenue to Elm Street, with an area from Louellen Street to Princeton Avenue lowered to 25 mph.

The ordinance was proposed after 11-year-old Sabrina Russo was hit by a car as she was crossing the street on her bike last fall. Russo suffered minor cuts and bruises but the accident raised concerns with her neighbors, her father Sam Russo said.

Hopewell Borough officials said the ultimate goal is to lower the speed limit throughout the borough to 25 mph.

The ordinance will be up for a final vote later this month.

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Save Our Blues group stands down

The Save Our Blues organization that has been soliciting donations while encouraging a letter-writing campaign aimed at ending the flight demonstration team’s grounding because of federal budget cuts has abruptly suspended its campaign.

Ron Nelson, director of the Pensacola-based group, said he had learned from a report in the Pensacola News Journal on Saturday that Save Our Blues hasn’t complied with Florida’s state regulations that campaigns seeking donations for nonprofit causes must be registered in Tallahassee.

Further, Nelson said that after a conversation earlier this week with a Navy attorney in Texas, he has dropped use of the Blue Angels logo, which his group had reproduced on its website.

Nelson said he used the Blues signature crest on his website after “miscommunication” in a phone conversation last month with a Navy official in Texas.

“My assumption was that I had permission,” Nelson said.

One part of the Save Our Blues campaign was to raise $50,000 for the National Naval Aviation Museum, but officials at that institution have disavowed any connection with Save Our Blues.

Although the Save Our Blues website included a disclaimer that it isn’t affiliated with either the museum or the Blue Angels, a strengthened version of that clause appeared on Wednesday.


Castle Air Museum ready to roll out its 56th plane

ATWATER -- One of the biggest planes to ever fly off an aircraft carrier is getting a second life at Castle Air Museum.

Volunteers will roll out a Douglas RA-3B Skywarrior today, making it the 56th plane to be displayed at the museum.

The aircraft made it through battles over Vietnam and the Cuban Missile Crisis. It had two sister planes, but both were shot down in Vietnam.

 It was designed to be able to combat aggression from the Soviet Union. The aircraft had the ability to use nuclear weapons to strike from aircraft carriers. They stayed in use until 1991.

Joe Pruzzo, chief executive officer of Castle Air Museum Foundation Inc., said the museum's Skywarrior was converted into a reconnaissance plane and is the only reconnaissance model in existence.

Aside from reconnaissance, other Skywarriors have been modified to refuel other planes or take part in electronic warfare.

Castle Air Museum's Skywarrior is on a long-term loan from the National Museum of Naval Aviation. It was hauled up from an aircraft storage facility in the city of Mojave in late 2010. Since then, volunteers have been working on restoring the plane, which is known as "The Whale" because of its enormous size.

Weighing 82,000 pounds, the plane is 76 feet long with a wingspan of 72 feet, Pruzzo said.

The museum didn't have to pay anything for the plane, he noted. But Pruzzo estimates that about $100,000 of donated money and volunteer hours went into bringing the plane back to life at the museum.

"It looks gorgeous now," Pruzzo said. "It's a tribute to the wonderful group of restoration volunteers we have."

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Military plans to conduct interceptions of mock hostile aircraft in Phoenix area

PHOENIX — The military will conduct air interceptions of mock hostile aircraft over Phoenix this week.

The Western Air Defense Sector exercises are set for Thursday between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. They'll involve F-16 fighters, military versions of the Lear Jet 35A business jet and Civil Air Patrol planes. People in the Phoenix area may see the aircraft.

The air defense exercise code-named "Felix Hawk" is designed to test the military's intercept and identification procedures for dealing with a variety of potentially hostile aircraft.   Similar exercises have been conducted since the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.

The exercise will be rescheduled if there is bad weather.


Win Warbirds Over the Beach Tickets: WNOR FM99


The Military Aviation Museum presents their annual WWII Airshow. FM99 has your chance to win a pair of daily admission tickets to Warbirds over the Beach.

Here is how you can enter:

Watch the video above of Rock Girl Gina at the Military Aviation Museum talking about the upcoming air show. At the end of the video there will be a keyword. Fill out the form online and enter the keyword for your chance to win.

For more info about the Air Show CLICK HERE

Deadline to enter is Sunday, May 12th by 11:59pm

Fine Print: All General FM99 Contest Rules Apply. Tickets valued at $22.00 per Seven winners will be randomly chosen and notified on Monday, May 13th. Tickets will be available for pick up after the winners have been notified at the FM99 studio offices.

Wardrobe provided by Echoes of Time

Fill out the form enter the keyword for your chance to win.

October's Paulding County Airshow will be the only show in the South to feature a Royal Canadian Air Force F-18

October's Paulding County Airshow will be the only show in the South to feature a Royal Canadian Air Force F-18.

Paulding County joined the ranks of counties sponsoring air shows just last year with Salute America. Riding on the wave of last years success, Salute America 2013 is scheduled for Oct. 5 and 6. It has grown into a two day event and a long line of amazing performers already signed on.

Brent Sparks, Chairman of Salute America 2013, reports that there are numerous national and international air show performers that travel and compete in these events; many are even veterans of the U.S. Military. The loss of the involvement of the present day military in air shows this year (due to the sequestration cuts announced on March 1) will be a disappointment, but those civilian performers will do a great justice to those serving America, by showcasing the history and traditions of the Armed Services through professional and thrilling displays in their vintage aircraft.  
 With the second annual Salute America air show already in the planning phase, a new website was rolled out demonstrating just one of the many improvements to this year’s show. Shannon Henrici of, an Atlanta based Website and Online Marketing Agency, was awarded this project last year and has spear-headed the new and improved design. “I was amazed at the dedication and participation of all of the committee members last year.  These people are top notch and putting on one of these shows is no easy undertaking.” says Mrs. Henrici. “I am honored to be a part of the team!”

For those who were unable to make the show last year, and for those first time visitors, go visit the show website and see the exciting Larry King Airshows promotional video recorded during his performance in last year’s air show. You won’t believe your eyes!

About Salute America Air Show:
Local veterans and air show performers gathered together to create the Paulding Community Foundation, in an effort to bring the air show experience to their community. The spark was born in 2012 with the very first annual show, Salute America 2012. Each year, the foundation works hard to plan, create and grow this spectacular event. The official host of the air show is Paulding Northwest Atlanta Airport, the first jet-capable airport to be built in Georgia in over thirty years.  It is no surprise that this airport has become the focus of industry growth for this county.