Blue Angels performance up in the air - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Blue Angels visit to the Tri-State up in the air

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The Blue Angels return visit to Evansville is up in the air.   

Looming budget cuts could ground all the military's precision flying teams. Indianapolis has already canceled its June air show featuring the Blue Angels, but the local Shrinerfest is hoping the show will go on with or without the Navy jets.

Organizers tell 14 News the show will go on. In fact, we learned they're working to book another act. They have five other flights teams scheduled to perform in July and, right now, they're working on booking one more. 

A memo from the U.S. Navy that clearly states if those spending cuts do take place the Navy is to cancel all shows involving the Blue Angels in the 3rd and 4th quarters to save $20 million. 

That includes the month of July when the Shrinersfest would take place. The organizers of Shrinersfest tell 14 News that even though they have not heard anything from the Blue Angels, yet they are putting a hold on all marketing and PR campaigns. 

Obviously being able to promote the Blue Angels would draw a larger crowd to the festival.

"We estimated about 35,000 to 40,000 people that came to the air show last year and I think those numbers would probably be higher," Dale Thomas, with the Shriners, said. "One thing about having somebody like the Blues, it brings people from out of town because they come to see the Blues, but we still had a lot of out of town people."

Organizers tell 14 News that they would need to know if the Blue Angles are coming to Evansville by May 1. 

We'll keep you updated on this story.

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