Goodyear Blimp to Visit Lubbock in Mid-October [VIDEO]
Goodyear's second blimp currently in service, Wingfoot Two, will make a four-day stop in Lubbock later this month.
Wingfoot Two will be traveling cross-country from Akron, Ohio to Los Angeles during a three-week period this month. From October 20 to 23, the blimp will be in Lubbock, housed at Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport.
According to Goodyear, the blimp's appearance in Lubbock is to help celebrate the 75th anniversary of McWhorter Tire Company. Additional details concerning Wingfoot Two's appearance in Lubbock is expected to be announced over the next week or two.
This past Sunday, Wingfoot Two started its 2,600-mile, cross-country journey from Akron, Ohio, to Los Angeles. According to Goodyear, a 26-person crew and a caravan of nine ground vehicles is accompanying the blimp during its 10-state journey.
"This is an exciting milestone for Goodyear as we look forward to introducing our new generation of Goodyear blimps to the west coast and engaging fans along our tour route to create new memories of the Goodyear Blimp across America," said Paul Fitzhenry, Goodyear's senior vice president, Global Communications.
Since 1917, Goodyear has built more than 300 lighter-than-air vehicles for public relations and defense applications. The company currently operates two technologically advanced Goodyear Blimps—Wingfoot One and Wingfoot Two. The third airship to complete the new fleet is under construction at the company's Wingfoot Lake facility near Akron, Ohio.
Today's Goodyear Blimps stretch more than 246 feet long— nearly the length of a football field. The airships have three vectored engines for enhanced maneuverability and can hit highway speeds of up to 73 mph. Each are supported by a semi-rigid frame composed of light-weight aluminum and carbon fiber that holds an envelope packed with 297,527 cubic feet of non-flammable helium.
Goodyear's blimp fleet has historical ties to Texas. Different versions of the blimps America and Columbia were based in North Harris County (about 20 miles north of Houston) from 1969 to 1992 at a hangar adjacent to Interstate 45.
You can watch a video of a Goodyear blimp at the Texas base from the mid-1980s in video shown below.