Wow, I feel like I’m still on a high from yesterday’s exciting news conference!
It was wonderful to see everyone who came to the new St. Cloud terminal to share their support for the air service initiative and the economic growth it will bring to Greater St. Cloud. Aside from chatting with others who share my passion for our community, I was thrilled to announce that we’ve reached a pivotal point in our pursuit of attracting air service.
We’ve received partnership agreements from 160 companies and individuals who have pledged more $3.3 million in travel commitments for direct flights from St. Cloud Regional Airport to O’Hare International Airport next year. And what’s more, more than one-third of this total was raised in the past two weeks!
I’ve included some more pictures of the yesterday’s news event below.
We plan on contacting at least 500 more businesses to reach our goal of $5 million by June, when we’ll be traveling to Sacramento, Calif., for the 2012 Marketing & Communications and JumpStart® Air Service Development Program. Hosted by the Airport Council International – North America (ACI-NA), this is the industry’s premier airport-airline marketing event. Myself and a number of GSDC airport initiative leaders traveled to Florida last month to meet with airlines, and the upcoming conference will be an opportunity to have second meetings with potential carriers. We hope our one-on-one discussions will spark negotiations back at the carrier’s headquarters.
After reaching – and surpassing – the halfway point in our fundraising goals, we are motivated now more than ever to bring this initiative to fruition. I encourage you to join our efforts in helping our region expand as a thriving business hub. Let’s go!