Thursday, July 17, 2014

Thunder Over Utah readies for another Southern Utah appearance

ST. GEORGE – Energy is building ahead of the Thunder Over Utah air show's return to St. George.

Scheduled to take to Southern Utah skies July 26 and 27, the U.S. Navy Blue Angels-headlined event drew an estimated 45,000 people during its two-day appearance in 2012, and organizers are preparing again for large crowds.

"I think it's going to be pretty big," said Alexa Venoy, an account executive with the advertising firm promoting the show, Herb Gillen Advertising. "I know some people will be concerned about how hot it's going to be, and we have some questions about what will happen with Pioneer Day on the Thursday. But it's going to be big."

The Blue Angels are scheduled to arrive in St. George on Wednesday in advance of the main weekend events and will headline a roster that includes the U.S. Army Golden Knights, Brad Wursten, Matt Younkin World Famous Aerobatics, the P-51 Red Tail Squadron, and local talents.

Tickets for Saturday are available for $30 online or through various local sales groups, with Sunday tickets available for $25. Tickets can also be purchased at the event for $35 on Saturday and $30 on Sunday. There also are costs for parking.

Children 15 and under are free.

This year there also is a preview party scheduled on July 25, featuring a "team twilight" jump by the U.S. Army Golden Knights, a World War II air and ground battle reenactment and a presentation by Matt Younkin and his Beech 18, in addition to live music, food and drinks and display aircraft. Tickets are available for $10 in advance or for $15 on the day of the event.

Tourism officials said the 2012 event generated an estimated $2.5 million in local economic impact by attracting such a large crowd, and air show organizers are working with community organizations to sell tickets, with some of the proceeds going back to those groups.

In 2012, some of those that benefited included the Dixie JROTC, Rotary, Boy Scouts of America and the Western Sky Warbirds Museum.

Some groups are not directly involved with the air show but are still deriving revenue by selling tickets and selling items during the show.

The Boy Scouts of America can earn $5 per ticket by selling tickets for the show, as long as buyers enter the code BSA and the troop number when purchasing a ticket, said Pat Carroll, who is helping organize the sales effort.

"We're trying to get kids involved. They had such a great time doing this last time," Carroll said, recommending that troop leaders interested in getting involved contact the local Scout office.

Tickets are for sale online at www.thunderoverutah.com, where event schedules and additional information is also available.

"We are delighted to be able to bring the world's most popular air show demonstration team back to the people of Utah," said Kevin Walsh, director of the air show. "We were extremely happy with the outpouring of support from the community for our first-ever show in 2012 and we have been working these past two years on enhancements to make our 2014 show even better."


Source Article:  http://www.thespectrum.com

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