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State Fair to include nightly drone show

By Eric Reinhardt


This year’s New York State Fair will include a nightly drone light show over the “New York Experience: festival grounds. The lone exception is Labor Day when the State Fair holds its annual concluding fireworks display. (Eric Reinhardt / BJNN file photo)

GEDDES, N.Y. — The upcoming New York State Fair will include a new drone light show.

The shows will start at about 9:30 p.m. over the “New York Experience” festival grounds, the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets said in a news release. The department operates the New York State Fair.

Shows will happen each night of the State Fair except for Labor Day, when the annual closing-night fireworks display will conclude the event.

The department opened the news release, saying “The night sky over the western end of the New York State Fairgrounds will come alive with light, sound and motion…”

The show — provided by Watervliet, Michigan–based Great Lakes Drone Company, LLC, — features 25 drones with lights attached. They will fly in precision patterns to form objects, timed to music that will play from the “New York Experience” stage’s sound system.

“We’re excited to bring a different kind of fireworks to the skies over the Fair and I think people are going to enjoy this new attraction. It’s one more reason to visit the New York Experience area, which we are building into one of the most interesting spaces at the Fair,” said Waffner.

The drone light show joins the State Fair’s drone film festival as “attractions created to highlight the state’s investment in unmanned aerial vehicle technology,” the department said.

Magazine ranking

The new event takes place as Business Facilities magazine named New York the “leading state” for drone-technology development, according to the department’s release.

New York tops the “Unmanned Aerial Systems” list, which is part of a July 23 article titled “Business Facilities’ 14th annual rankings: State Rankings Report” on the magazine’s website. New York is followed by Nevada, Virginia, Texas, North Dakota, New Mexico, Alaska, North Carolina, Kansas, and Oklahoma, according to the website of Business Facilities magazine.

Business Facilities cited the state’s investment in the drone corridor, noting that the 50-mile length of sensors and radars is due to be in full activation later this year.

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