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Air show gets mixed review from Qualicum Beach flying fan
We attended the air show, and for the most part it was pretty good.
My wife and I came with our 13-year-old and her friend.
The traffic organization by the RCMP and base personal was excellent and mirrored previous years. The air show itself was also good although slightly smaller.
However, the entrance lineups and food vending offered were terrible.
First, we had pre-bought our tickets at Thrifty Foods and were shocked to find that we had to walk to the back of a nearly third of a kilometre lineup. There were six security tents and one lineup to them.
In previous years there were multiple lineups and we remember wondering which lineup was faster, only to find they were all about the same. From the back to the front of this single lineup took about one hour to the security tent. If you had not pre-bought tickets then you had to walk this line twice.
Many older people had to do just that and in the heat no less! When we got to the security tent we had to dump our water as they would not allow us in. They said it was all spelled out on their website.
Why would I read the website when I bought my tickets elsewhere. I just read the website and you really have to dig to find that info.
It also says you cannot bring homemade food in, only prepackaged and/or sealed snack food. We had planned to buy food at the vendors as we always had so we didn't think that would be a problem.
Once in after dumping our water and carrying around the empty and heavy containers it was now around noon. The food lineups were way too long and some venders had already ran out of stock.
We ended up having some unhealthy doughnuts and frozen fruit pops. As for water you had to stand in the same long lineups just to buy water, if you didn't pass out before then. I ended up getting water from the well-manned beer garden for, get this — $2 per bottle!
As well, they should have perhaps sold water right at the gate or even given it away for free for those that they forced to dump theirs.
As for food there were no vendors selling hot dogs or burgers near the runway, only one-hour pizza and miscellaneous vendors. Near the hangars our friends waited two hours in a lineup for a burger.
Previous years did not have these problems.