Blackhawks' Anthem singer to open Balloons Over Vermilion

via The News-Gazette

The renowned national-anthem singer for Chicago Blackhawks games will open the third Balloons Over Vermilion festival later this month with his “unique, yet traditional rendition” of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

Tenor Jim Cornelison will be part of an opening ceremony July 13, the first day of the hot-air balloon festival at the Vermilion Regional Airport north of Danville. 

Cornelison has sung the anthem at many major sporting and other events, rising to fame during the Blackhawks’ Stanley Cup runs in 2010, 2013 and 2015.

As festival-goers enter the Vermilion Regional Airport grounds on opening day, hundreds of American flags — placed by the Patriot Guard Riders — will line the highway in front of the airport and the main drive into the facility.

Gates open at 3 p.m. and the opening ceremony begins at 6.

A Texan T-6 warbird, flown by local pilot Jay Schroeder, will soar overhead immediately following the anthem.

First responders and the American Legion Riders motorcycle club will lead the Parade of Pilots before the mass ascension of more than 30 hot-air balloons.

“We want to show our appreciation for those who serve and have served our great country,” event Co-Chairman Jim Anderson said in a press release.

For information, go to https://www.balloonsoververmilion.com.

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