Redding Air Show feels like a Million Bucks

The Exchange Club of Redding, organizers of the biennial Air Show, has donated $16,700 to the city of Redding. The donation was made official at Tuesday night’s (March 2) City Council meeting.

The action boosted total donations as a result of the 2009 show to $83,500. To date since the show’s inception in 1982, the Exchange Club of Redding has donated nearly $940,000 to the city, area charities, churches, nonprofits, youth groups, military units, schools and volunteer organizations.

In addition, the club presented council members with numbers that showed the 2009 show was worth more than a million dollars to the local economy.

“The city went the extra mile to support the show in very tough economic times, and the club wanted to show it’s appreciation with the added donations,” said Bill Wagner, air show chairman.

The club tries to donate back to the city after each show, but this was by far the largest contribution ever.

The funds will provide for items that the police, fire, airports and streets departments would not have been able to afford, because of tight budgets.

Redding Police will be adding another dog to the force. Redding Fire is getting much-needed multi-band rescue radios for its airport vehicles. The club donated a dump loader to the airport and funds to help purchase a projection system for public works.

As for the million value, Wagner said the club used a very conservative estimate that the money spent by the Air Show as well other funds generated by the show turned over 1.5 times in the community.

“The 41 members of the Exchange Club of Redding are extremely proud of the work they do for the community. The air show is a lot of work, but to the members, many who have been working on the show since the beginning, it is a labor of love,” Wagner said.

In addition to the Air Show, the Exchange Club of Redding sponsors the annual peace officer of the year awards (scheduled for March 25), annual firefighter of the year awards (April 22), Scholar-Athlete awards (May 27), scholarships for high school seniors and Special Olympics bowling as well as ringing the bell for the Salvation Army.

Major financial sponsors for the 2009 show included MD Imaging, ReMax of Redding, CGI Technical Services, Hemsted’s Van & Storage, Napa, Win-River, Pepsi, Foothill Distributing, CR Gibbs, McHale Signs, Hardware Express, Frozen Gourmet, ArcSine Engineering, Lawrence & Associates,, Shasta Regional Medical Center, Redding Dental Arts and EMS Home Furnishings.

Media sponsors included the Record Searchlight, KNVN Channel 24, KHSL TV 12, CW10, Fox 20, KRCR-TV, Q-97 FM, KHSA 104.3 FM, KLXR AM1230, and Prime Cinemas.

The club is already at work on Air Show 2011.