Air National Guard exhibit at Oklahoma State Fair allows simulated experience

A traveling exhibit at the Oklahoma State Fair this weekend allows participants to simulate such experiences as refueling a B-2 bomber.
BY SARAH HUSSAIN shussain@opubco.com Modified: September 21, 2012 at 6:52 pm •  Published: September 22, 2012

“The challenges that are provided here are very similar to what you can expect in the Guard,” said Wes Simmons, a production recruiter who is on site to answer questions fairgoers might have about the Guard as well as recruiting them if they are interested.

The traveling interactive experience debuted in 2010 to educate Americans about the Air Guard's role in serving local communities and the nation.

Johnson said the tour has gone to festivals, air shows and music and sports events across the nation since May on a 22-week tour.

A new component this year is the “Grateful States” initiative.

“This allows participants to record a personal 20-second video thank-you message for those men and women of the Air National Guard currently serving our country at home and abroad,” Johnson said.

“I think it is a great idea,” fairgoer Lucas Allen said. “I come from a military family and I know that we need to show strong support for what they're doing because they are someone's family member.”

The tour will remain until the close of the fair on Sunday, but the Air National Guard invites all to “Rise to the Challenge” by visiting GOANG.com/games.

The video messages will be featured on the “Grateful States” website, GoANG.com/GratefulStates. Those who cannot make it to the fair can visit the website to make their own thank-you videos.