Quesnel International Airshow: SkyFest 2013

I was fortunate to go back to my hometown and promote Quesnel, BC’s International Airshow “SkyFest” via social media this past summer—my sister Barb and I (Social Media Divas). It was exciting to see the quality of performers that the organizers of SkyFest booked for this two-day event.

Quesnel SkyFest, Carol Pilon (wingwalker)

We went to the Quesnel airport for a couple days before the airshow started and enjoyed being behind the scenes.  We were able to talk to Carol Pilon, the “wingwalker” as she assembled her plane. She drove across Canada to participate in this airshow—and she was spectacular!

Barb was at the airport to get a new schedule and see what was happening on the Wednesday before SkyFest started, and Kent Pietsch, the stunt pilot for Jelly Belly Candy asked her if she wanted to go for a ride in his plane “to burn off some fuel”. Yikes!

Quesnel SkyFest, Jelly Belly plane

Being “media” had its benefits!  We had the privilege of interviewing Canadian Forces Snowbirds pilots and taking photos with them. We took photos and interviewed Captain Denis Bandet and Captain Trevor Shawaga. This was the first time the Snowbirds have been to Quesnel.

Another big “first” was this was the first time the CF-18 landed at the Quesnel Airport.  Captain Patrick “Flocho” Pollen did a great job of getting that plane on the ground!

Friday evening, we had dinner with all the pilots — a genuine outdoor pig roast at the airport… and it was delicious!  It was nice to be able to sit down and talk casually with the pilots, who spread out and sat with everyone.

I was surprised at how little media attention the Airshow drew for such a large event with many “first times.” Discovery Channel Canada, the Quesnel Cariboo Observer newspaper, CKPG TV, and Cariboo Radio were there, and my sister and I were managing the social media. Most of the time, my sister, me, and the official photographer, Les Carlson, were atop the 15-foot-high media scaffolding. It was great for us—centre-show!

There were many great performances throughout the next two days, and I could go on and on about each one. Instead, here’s a slideshow!

A big thanks to all the performers for the amazing show!

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