The Shop ‘n Save Westmoreland Airshow is flying high at the Arnold Palmer Regional Airport this weekend, and is expected to attract about 100,000 people to the Latrobe area.
The roar of fighter jets will be rumbling over Latrobe as the annual airshow takes flight Saturday and Sunday.
”Even if it’s not airplanes flying, we have a great array of things on the ground,” airport executive director Gabe Monzo said.
The weekend show attracts an estimated 100,000 over the course of two days and pumps millions into the local economy.
”We think it’s about $5 million it brings to the region; we think that’s pretty conservative. Just the air show itself, it costs about $300,000 to put on,” Monzo said.
While the airport crew tries to make every show feel different, this year’s big attraction is the United States Air Force F-16 Viper demonstration team.
The team is led by captain Aimee Fiedler.
”You know what I say is, the jet doesn’t really care. It’s a piece of metal, it doesn’t discriminate on age, or gender, or race, so if you’re qualified to do the job, you can do the job,” Fiedler said.
Fiedler has been flying since she was 16.
While she uses her training to put on an exhilarating show for the crowd, she said it is the men and women on the ground who make the flight possible.
”I get to showcase their hard work. They’re hard at work on the jet now, they’re making sure it’s good to go for tomorrow. They put so much blood, sweat and tears into that aircraft and then I get the honor of actually flying it,” Fiedler said.
The air show runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
You can still buy tickets at Shop ‘n Save or at the gate at the airport.
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