Houston, TX, March 18, 2008 --(PR.com
)-- Houston takes off with the Texas Local Organizing Committee.
Houston was officially selected as one of the milestone sites on the historic World Sky Race. In the Executive Board Room of the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau at City Hall, members and friends of the Texas Local Organizing Committee met to take the first steps in organizing Houston’s part of the World Sky Race. Greg Ortale, president of the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau opened the first World Sky Race gathering in Texas. The meeting was packed with civic leaders and members of city agencies that work on bringing and organizing big events for city tourism. Ortale, the new head of the GHCVB, stated Houston will make its stop one of the most memorable celebrations of the upcoming race. Tim McClure, founder of GSD&M and creator of the award-winning anti-litter campaign "Don't Mess With Texas" talked about how the World Sky Race is one of the big ideas for which Texas is known. As part of the program to encourage selecting Houston for World Sky Race, Mayor White and City Council declared October 2, 2007 to be "Houston - World Sky Race Day"
Don Hartsell, Commissioner of the World Air League spoke and provided for those in attendance details on recent developments in the global race planning. Consul Generals and representatives of Japan, Egypt, Germany, Qatar and Italy were included in the meeting.
The World Sky Race will be a series of sixteen races for lighter-than-air craft that will compete for the fastest time around the world for their class of craft. Starting the race series at the Greenwich Prime Meridian in London, the World Sky Race will include stops at the Roman Coliseum, the Great Pyramids, Taj Mahal, Great Wall of China, Golden Gate Bridge and NASA Johnson Space Center. By competing in and completing all sixteen races, the skyship and team with the fastest cumulative time will be crowned the “World Sky Champion”. Program planning for the launch of the world sky race is for fall of 2009. This will be part of the city's efforts for raising global awareness of Houston. Last year, Houston was eliminated early in the bid competition for the U.S. host city for the 2016 Olympics. "We are pleased that World Air League is providing an opportunity for Houston to be on the center stage in this international event," was part of Ortale’s message to the delegates and audience of the World Sky Race Texas Local Organizing Committee. "Houston is no stranger to airships and had been the proud home of the Goodyear Blimp. We hope this is the first step in bringing back to Houston permanent airship operations."