Two of the Regional Development Authority's signature initiatives in Northwest Indiana -- the renewal of Marquette Park in Miller and the expansion of the Gary/Chicago International Airport -- will be on display June 11-12 when the once-annual Air Show returns to Gary.
Keeping a promise made when the return of the show (last held in Gary in 2012) was announced last December,Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson held a press conference Tuesday to reveal details about event, including the headline acts, a new Web site and social media tools, and a new logo.
The Air Force Thunderbirds precision flight team and the Army Golden Knights parachute team will swoop down along the shores of Lake Michigan for the July 11-12 Gary Airshow at Marquette Park.
Freeman-Wilson noted the airshow will be the first one held since the completion of major renovations to the park. Arts and entertainment and "really the advantages of a robust lakefront are extremely important to the economic development that we do in the city," she said.
The renovation of Marquette Park, completed in 2013, was funded by a $28 million grant from the RDA. The RDA has invested in similar shoreline initiatives under the direction of the Marquette Plan in Hammond, Whiting, East Chicago and Portage. These projects will create more than 1,000 jobs in Northwest Indiana by 2025, in part because they enable major events like the Gary Air Show.
Participants in the show will operate out of the newly expanded Gary/Chicago International Airport. The $170 million project should be complete by June, Mayor Freeman-Wilson said, allowing the event to serve as a "coming out party" that will showcase the new airport. To stay up-to-date on the Air Show, check out the Facebook page here and follow them on Twitter here.