Gary/Chicago International Airport and Allegiant, the new airline at the airport, are kicking off an aggressive marketing campaign with two events in September.
Allegiant's "Vote for Vacation" campaign tour will make a stop at the Radisson Star Plaza south parking lot from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Sept. 13. The "Vote for Vacation" is a nationwide Allegiant campaign going to 75 U.S. cities.
People stopping by will get to vote for their favorite Orlando, Fla., vacation activities. All voters will get a $21.60 "tax break" to use on Allegiant flights out of Gary. Participants also can register for drawings for prizes.
The local prize will be two round-trip tickets to Orlando, Allegiant's destination from Gary. All participants also will be entered for a chance to win the national prize of four years of free Allegiant flights.
"The sole purpose of all of this is to make sure our community knows about Allegiant," Gary airport marketing consultant James Ward told the airport authority board on Monday.
Ward was hired by the airport authority in May to increase its marketing efforts. The "Vote for Vacation" campaign comes as Allegiant is in the midst of its yearly slow-season flight cutbacks, which means no flights out of Gary for six weeks starting Sept. 6.
The Gary airport will also be putting on a "The Quest ... for the Perfect Vacation in Orlando, Fla.," a scavenger hunt with a prize of a vacation for 4. The Quest will take place at Marquette Park Beach at 10 a.m. Sept. 29. There will be a registration form available at the airport's Web site at www.garychicagoairport.com .
People who want to participate can also start accumulating Quest points by participating in other activities such as the "Vote for Vacation" campaign stop, "Liking" the airport's Facebook page, and sending in photos of their hometown city hall.