The Chicago Rockford International Airport has canceled the 2016 Rockford AirFest due to scheduling conflicts with the Defense Department and F-22 jet teams.
“We had successfully scheduled the U.S. jet teams to be in Rockford the first weekend in June, said Mike Dunn, Executive Director of the Chicago Rockford International Airport in a news release. “We then learned the DOD was rescheduling the main military flying teams to participate in academy week, a time of year when the Defense Department and the military honor graduating seniors from the military academies.”
Dunn says that RFD was then offered Memorial Day weekend as an option, but that they did not want to compete with the Young at Heart Festival in Loves Park.
Another proposed date in the third weekend in June was scrapped when the headline F-22 Raptor was removed from consideration for Rockford.
“Hosting AirFest is a huge undertaking and expense for the airport,” said Dunn. “We know this is a very popular event for people in Rockford and the Midwest and we’re exceptionally disappointed. The Airport has already begun planning for and hosting Rockford AirFest in 2017 and we look forward to making that event the best one yet.”
This marks the second time in four years AirFest has been canceled due to issues with the military flight teams being available.