2016 Open House Wrap Up

Every day about 60 businesses employ more than 1500 people at Harrisburg International Airport. More than 3300 individuals fly to and from destinations all over the world as more than 200 airplanes take off and land. However, due to security regulations, most of this activity takes place in areas not accessible to local residents.

On August 20, 2016, once again Harrisburg International Airport opened its perimeter security fence and welcomed the region to the airport. The goal was to provide an education on aviation and provide access to some of the aircraft that fly overhead.

Nearly 6300 people walked in, and many even sat in, actual commercial, freight, and military aircraft. They had conversations with pilots, freight handlers, mechanics, and various other staff about what they do at the airport every day. The airport wants children, young and old, in the community to fall in love with aviation, for the first time, or all over again.

This year, more than 35 aircraft, firetrucks, police cars and pieces of ground handling and snow removal equipment were on static display. There were RC aircraft demonstrations, a rock climbing wall, jet engine displays and a traveling science show on aviation from the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. Local non-profits sold refreshments and raised money for their organizations.

The event may have been best summed up by Dale from Lebanon: “I attended the open house today along with my 2 sons and nephew (ranging from ages 3 to 8). We really had a great time. All of the hosts who were present were clearly enthusiastic about their service and equipment and they were all so kind and gracious in their interactions. Thanks for hosting the event and I’m sure you’ll see me and my family again in the future.”