Rockford AirFest this weekend, June 7-8

Staff Report

The Chicago Rockford International Airport (RFD) is again proud to host “Rockford AirFest 2014: Let the Thunder Roll,” featuring the USAF Thunderbird Demonstration Team and the U.S. Army Golden Knights. They’ll be here Saturday, June 7, and Sunday, June 8. Hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m., both days. AirFest activities include static aircraft displays, family-friendly activities, concessions, an RV park and special attractions.

Grounded last year because of the government sequestration, the last AirFest was held in 2012 and drew 100,000 people for the two-day event, generating more than $3 million in the region.

Saturday, June 7, the honorary chairman will be Tom Gendron, president/CEO, Woodward, and the honorary media chairman will be Garry Meier of WGN. Sunday, June 8, the honorary chairman will be Tim White, president, UTC Aerospace Systems, Electric Systems, and the honorary media chairman will be Christie Nicks of FOX 39.

In recognition of its strong aerospace workforce and commitment to the region’s economic growth, leading area manufacturer UTC Aerospace Systems has been named the Presenting Sponsor of this year’s AirFest.

RFD has a long-standing relationship with UTC Aerospace , and we are honored to have such valued corporate support from a company that generates such an impact in the aerospace industry and our community. We appreciate their continued commitment to the region,” said Mike Dunn, RFD executive director.

AirFest offers an exciting and family-friendly entertainment option to the region. We welcome the opportunity to support this first-class community event,” said White.

Slated as one of the best air shows in the country, performances by the USAF Thunderbirds,U.S. Army Golden Knights and Canadian Snowbirds will be complemented by other enthusiast favorites including the Aerostars, AeroDynamix (RV), Goulian, and Lucas Oil and Nalls Aviation.

WGN’s Garry Meier will be broadcasting live from 3 to 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, June 4, at RFD’s main terminal.

Sounds Of Good News and the YES Club Core Group Choir will perform from 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday, June 7, with the YES Club Kids singing from 10 to 10:30 a.m. This will be their first appearance at AirFest.

Along with great performances and static displays, the “Honoring Heroes” program will also be returning this year. The program will recognize the dedication and sacrifices made by Vietnam War veterans who have served our country. Nominees must not have been previously recognized in a related program and must reside in RFD’s service region of northern Illinois, southern Wisconsin and eastern Iowa.

Tickets are now on sale and can be purchased online at or at any participating area Culver’s Restaurant. All online ticket sales, including VIP packages, preferred seating, fly-in admission and one-day or weekend RV park passes, are available. VIP packages consist of the popular 21 and older Captain’s Club and family-friendly Aviator’s Club, which feature front-row seating and concessions. Active and retired military with proper ID will receive complimentary preferred seating with their carload admission fee. Advanced carload admission tickets are available online for $20 each at On-site carload admission is $30. Additional information may be found at

From the June 4-10, 2014, issue

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