Shenandoah Valley Airport Task Force encouraging folks to fly local

Shenandoah Valley Airport Task Force encouraging folks to fly local
SHD Air Service Task Force is encouraging more people to fly local. (Source: WDBJ)

WEYERS CAVE, Va. (WHSV) - Shenandoah Valley Airport has seen a record number of passengers since 2018 and the SHD Air Service Task Force is hoping to keep that momentum going by encouraging more people to fly local.

“JMU’s role in sharing this grassroots approach with this task force has definitely bring about awareness, and increased passenger traffic and passenger volume. At JMU, we have named SHD the official airport of JMU,” Nick Swartz, Chair of the SHD Air Service Task Force said.

“We are encouraging our faculty and staff when in engaging in both professional and personal travel, that when it makes sense, to utilize SHD.”

And SHD has taken that boost from JMU a step further by reaching out to other members of the community to show them why it’s important to take advantage of the airport we have right in our backyard.

“The access provided by local air service drives our region’s ability to attract business investment and support existing businesses that are already here,” Mary Ann Alger, Chair of the FLY SHD Ambassador program said.

And one way the task force is promoting local travel is through their ambassador program, where volunteers are getting the word out through their personal and professional networks.

“This area is known to work well with one another, and the work of the task force is an example of the collaborative spirit that is found in the Valley,” Swartz said.

Swartz said SHD has been rebranded to show support of the local community, parking at the airport is free, you don’t have to wait in long lines and you can count on arrival and departures being on time.

The ambassador program is also working to get more people to visit the Valley.

“We promote incoming traffic into SHD using networks of of professionals in a number of sectors,” Alger explained.

Anyone who is interested in serving as an ambassador can reach out to Swartz at swartznj@jmu.edu to get their name added to the list.

“it’s not a big time commitment. We’re simply asking people to remain up to date on flight schedules in and out of SHD, the possibility of other airlines adding more destinations in and out of SHD based on the demand for SHD,” Alger said. “We simply want people to have SHD on their top of mind consideration as their in conversation socially and professionally.”

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