Coronavirus impacts: Sun ‘n Fun offering ‘Home Edition’ in lieu of massive annual aerospace expo in Polk County

Polk County

POLK COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – If they can’t take to the sky, they’ll take to the internet.

One of Polk County’s largest annual events, the Sun ‘n Fun Aerospace Expo, was forced to cancel last month to abide by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 guidelines.

The event attracts 250,000 aerospace enthusiasts to Polk County.

It brings in 80% of Sun ‘n Fun’s budget, which covers educational programs for aspiring pilots and other programs.

To make up for the canceled event, the organization is preparing Sun ‘n Fun Home Edition. It will be launched next week.

“It’s a large undertaking,” said Sun ‘n Fun’s Greg Gibson. “The Home Edition didn’t exist until about two weeks ago. We’re looking to create a pretty massive event, virtually, and try to get it out there in time to satisfy people. They want to see their air show.”

Home Edition, which will be linked on the Sun ‘n Fun’s website, will have live interviews, exhibitors, air show footage and videos of home built and military aircraft.

Sun ‘n Fun is also selling patches to be added to T-shirts that read “The Greatest Air Show that Never Happened.”

“We hope that the Sun ’n Fun Home Edition will give people something they can anchor to. Certainly, click the donate button and help us out. We’re trying to raise upwards of a million dollars. We figure if we get 250,000 people to click that button and give us $5, we’re well on our way,” said Gibson.

The weeks-long Home Edition updates will lead up to a telethon benefit on May 30.

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