910th Airlift Wing Cancels ‘Thunder Over the Valley’

VIENNA, OHIO – The 910th Airlift Wing, based here, has cancelled the 2020 Thunder Over The Valley Air Show and Open House, scheduled for June 20-21. The announcement was made Friday by Co. Joe Janik, 910 Airlift Wing commander and YARS installation commander.

While the 2020 budget has been passed, the wing’s current operational budget has to be prioritized toward the readiness training of the wing, Janik explained. “We are making the very tough decision to cancel this much-anticipated public event based on the given budget we have now,” he said.

Janik said that although additional funds may become available in a couple of months with a 2020 appropriation, it would not be fair to everyone involved to wait to make this call.

“My job as commander is to make the best use of resources provided to us, and our focus must be on prioritizing training to meet readiness standards,” he said. “An air show is a very rewarding, but expensive, proposition, and it is my responsibility as the wing commander to ensure we have a combat-ready force, able to deploy at a moment’s notice.”

The commander said promoting good community relations is one of the reasons that military public events like air shows and open houses are held, and he hopes to hold an air show again in the coming years.

More than 10,000 people attended air shows at YARS in 2017 and 2014.

“The Reserve Citizen Airmen of the 910th Airlift Wing and everyone working at Youngstown Air Reserve Station are always in awe of the support we receive every day from everyone outside of our fence line, especially here in the Mahoning Valley,” said Janik. “Expressing our appreciation to the community is one of the reasons we hold these public events, and we hope we can resume the practice sometime in the near future. But, our mission is to be combat ready now for tomorrow’s fight. The community’s support helps make that happen. For that we are always thankful.”

Pictured at top: Promotional graphic posted by the Youngstown Air Reserve Base Community Council.

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.