Vanquish Worldwide, along with sister companies Business Owners Benefits Association (BOBA) and Peak Technical Institute (Peak), are showing their support for the long-awaited Smoky Mountain Air Show’s return April 16-17 at McGhee Tyson Airport.
On Thursday, Oct. 20, Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority Board Chairman Howard Vogel introduced Maryville-based Vanquish Worldwide as premier sponsor, along with BOBA and Peak as supporting sponsors. Together the three companies donated a substantial monetary gift in support of the air show, which is expected to bring in about 200,000 spectators.
While Vanquish provides logistics solutions and support to government and commercial clients worldwide, Vanquish President and CEO Eric W. Barton and employees of the Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business said the air show partnership would be the perfect fit in their ongoing community support.
“Our team knew immediately that we wanted to be a part of this exciting event,” Barton said.
Vanquish’s premier sponsorship will help the Smoky Mountain Air Show secure performers and cover expenses related to the air show. A portion of air show proceeds will also benefit HonorAir Knoxville, a nonprofit organization dedicated to sending World War II, Korean and Vietnam War veterans free of charge to Washington, D.C., to visit the memorials built in their honor.
“Vanquish is thrilled to support such a long-awaited aviation event that is sure to positively impact our region,” Barton said. “However, as a veteran, I believe this air show has an even greater importance as it allows us to increase awareness and funding for HonorAir Knoxville, which honors those who have given so much for this great nation.”
Among other aviation performing acts, the U.S. Navy Blue Angels will be performing as the signature military demonstration act for the air show. The Blue Angels, always a crowd pleaser, recently visited East Tennessee in preparation for their upcoming performance.
In conjunction with the air show sponsorship, Vanquish and its sister companies will partner with air show personnel for marketing efforts leading up to the two-day event. Sponsor company names and logos will be included in all media advertising and on air show’s website home page. Premier supporting sponsorship also includes VIP and general parking passes and exhibit canopies during the event. Vanquish, BOBA and Peak plan to invite colleagues, employees and dignitaries to join them for the event.
The two-day air show will be the first aviation event to grace our skies in more than a decade. After the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, military resources were redirected overseas, making it difficult for an air show to exist. Knoxville’s last air show in April 2000 brought in over 250,000 people. Dignitaries, including Blount County Mayor Ed Mitchell, across the region have expressed excitement for the air show’s return.
“The economic effect this is going to have on this area is going to be tremendous,” Mitchell said.
“It’s going to be a huge opportunity to showcase everything East Tennessee has to offer,” Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett said during Vanquish’s announcement as premier sponsor. “Vanquish Worldwide is an outstanding and growing local business and continues to be a great community partner. Their investment in the Smoky Mountain Air Show will help ensure this is the best air show possible. … Thanks to partners like Vanquish, this air show will be an opportunity to make lifelong memories.”
While the air show is several months away, committee members are still searching for more than 600 event volunteers. A wide variety of volunteer options are available to fit anyone’s interest, including chalet hosts, set up and breakdown, parking attendance and ground clean-up.
“We are proud to support our military veterans, the 2016 Smoky Mountain Air Show and most importantly our community here in East Tennessee,” Barton said. “We are thankful to be a part of this air show and we always want to be there at the tip of the spear to support our veterans.”
Smoky Mountain Air Show organizers say they hope to announce other major aviation acts by the first of the year.