June 23, 2014
/ by Kimberly Cooper
When: August 19
What: These days, it’s easy to plan a vacation, hop a flight and arrive at your desired destination. Air travel wasn’t always so fast and simple, though. Before the invention of the airplane, it was unheard of to make it across the country in less than a few days. Since Orville and Wilbur Wright invented and built the first practical fixed-wing aircraft, however, huge strides have been made in terms of air travel and aviation. Thank the Wright brothers for their contributions to air travel on August 19, National Aviation Day.
Background: On December 17, 1903, the Wright brothers made the first powered flight, changing aviation forever. In 1939, President Franklin D. Roosevelt established August 19, the birthday of Orville Wright, as National Aviation Day to celebrate the advancements and developments in aviation.
Story Pitch: A wide variety of groups and organizations can pitch around National Aviation Day. Airlines should note the importance of aviation and recognize the innovations occurring in the industry. They may offer discounts or perks for people flying on National Aviation Day. In addition, industry, history and aviation museums may want to advertise the aviation-related items in their collections. Aviation technology companies and contractors may want to note their contributions in improving methods of air transport, and government agencies may want to highlight progress in areas such as flight safety. Travel agents may take advantage of the day by offering travel packages, with flights, for assorted destinations to celebrate the history of aviation and its impact on the travel industry.
Story Hook: Travel is among the top 10 industries in 49 states and Washington, D.C., in terms of employment. How else does travel, especially air travel, impact not only the economy but also other aspects of everyday life? Consider the following when you make your pitch:
Tips: A pilot who flies often would have some tips on safe travel and flight safety. In addition, a family who travels frequently can offer tips and suggestions on how to navigate airports easily.
U.S. Travel Association 202-408-8422 www.ustravel.org
Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association 800-872-2672 www.aopa.org
Air Line Pilots Association, International 703-689-2270 www.alpa.org
American Helicopter Society International 703-684-6777 www.vtol.org
Women in Aviation, International 973-839-4647 www.wia.org
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