Denver Air Connection officially took over as Alliance’s new air service on June 1st. Eight passengers flew out on the morning flight, and passenger Cayley Gerth, had the plane all to herself on the afternoon flight back into Alliance.
The Alliance Municipal Airport hosted a public open house, in celebration of the new air service that began at 2:30 pm on Saturday. The staff of the local airport were joined by Wade Goetz, director of business development for Denver Air Connection, Alliance City Manager Jeff Sprock, and Alliance Mayor Mike Daffney, who were on deck to answer questions and concerns from the citizens of Alliance.
“The airline is privately owned so that gives us a lot more control over what we do and when we do it,” replied Goetz, when asked if the airline was owned by a large company.
Pilot Chad Smith will be primarily flying the Alliance to Denver route. He has been flying in and out of Alliance for the past thirteen years as a cargo pilot for Key Lime Air, with the UPS contract. He and his family live in Alliance and his wife is from here.
“That green airplane has been my baby for a long time. I went to our jet side about two years ago and we are excited to come back here. I am actually starting to fly the middle of next week, and I am going to be flying all year round. I am a member and citizen of this community here in Alliance, Nebraska, we are excited about that. I’m looking forward to flying you guys around, it’s really emotional for me, it’s been a big deal. There is nothing better than the opportunity to for me to be a captain at this air line,” said Smith.
The airline gave away vouchers to fly to other terminals where Denver Air Connection provides service, to the passenger of the first flight in as well as several community members to be used within the next six months. Promotional items from the air service were given to those who attended the open house, as well.
The first afternoon flight in landed at around 2:45 pm, piloted by Glen Rich, pilot and vice president of Denver Air Connection and Clifford Honeycutt, pilot, mechanic, and president of Denver Air Connection. The flight was met by the crowd and the airport ARF truck, as on lookers watched a water cannon from the truck spayed an arch of water over the plane as it taxied in.