CARTHAGE, N.C. (February 25, 2020) – The Festival D’Avion organizers have recently partnered with the USO of North Carolina and will provide complimentary tickets to those families who have been involved with the recent 82nd Airborne deployment at Fort Bragg.

Details for the distribution of these tickets will be published in the coming days.

“Providing free tickets to the families of deployed soldiers is the right thing to do,” said Festival D’Avion co-founder Peter Stilwell. “Every ticket we sell to the general public will be matched with a donated ticket for these families. We are pleased to be working with the USO of North Carolina, which will make sure these tickets get into the hands of the special families to enjoy the 2020 Festival D’Avion.”

The USO will also have a display on-site during the Festival D’Avion on October 2-3, 2020, for those who would like to learn about their mission of supporting military servicemen and servicewomen in the state of North Carolina.

Tickets for the Festival D’Avion are available online at with exclusive discounts for active and retired military personnel.

The Festival D’Avion debuted in the spring of 2018, with a main goal of celebrating freedom and flight. For the past two years, the event has paid tribute to the men and women who have served in the military with special aircraft displays from the individual branches of the Armed Forces, Warbirds and vintage planes, along with featured entertainment. The inaugural Festival D’Avion recognized the Centennial anniversary of Fort Bragg, and last year’s festival honored Roy “Swede” Boreen, Jr., who remains a local hero and survivor of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

The Festival D’Avion has quickly become a premier static airshow in North Carolina and one of the few events which has received Pentagon participation approval from all of the individual branches of the military. To date, the 2020 Festival D’Avion boasts commitments from the U.S. Army and Fort Bragg, the Marine Corps and Camp Lejeune, the Coast Guard from Elizabeth City. The Air Force has recently committed a squadron of F-16 fighter jets out of Shaw Air Force Base in Charleston, S.C., to conduct a spectacular fly-over during the event. The Naval base in Virginia will also be providing an F-18 fighter jet, and the Army Special Forces C-27 from Pope Field near Fort Bragg will also be returning in 2020.

The Raleigh-based Bandit Flight Team, highly-trained former military pilots, will be performing aerial fly-overs and maneuvers during the 2020 Festival D’Avion as a tribute to the military Warbird heritage and as an opportunity to salute the returning war veterans.

“It has been an honor for the Moore County Airport to host this prestigious event for the past two years,” said Ron Maness, a former Air Force fighter pilot and the current manager for Moore County Airport. “Our community has been so supportive of the men and women who serve to protect our freedom, and we are thrilled that this event continues to grow each year. The members of the Airport Authority and our staff are eager to show off our airport facilities to the thousands of anticipated patrons during this unique Festival. It is amazing to the see the growth of this great event.”

The 2020 Festival D’Avion has again partnered with the nonprofit foundation, Children of Fallen Heroes, whose mission is to provide support and immediate needs for children and surviving spouses of First Responders and military fallen heroes. The Children of Fallen Heroes was founded by Kenneth Wasley to honor the life of his father and the 13 men who lost their lives while serving the U.S. Army Parachute Team, The Golden Knights, in a tragic plane crash in North Carolina in 1973. The “Skydiving Angels,” along with Fort Bragg based jump teams, will perform precision jumps during the Festival on Friday and Saturday.

“As we celebrate freedom and flight during the Festival D’Avion, it was important that we include the men and women that serve as First Responders throughout North Carolina,” Stilwell said. “Last year, we introduced a special exhibit area featuring a collection of classic and modern-day rescue vehicles with their crews in attendance, and we are excited to expand this area in 2020 to include aircraft from the N.C. Highway Patrol, Carolina Life Flight and the N.C. Forestry Department.”

Their helicopters and fire-fighting airplanes will be on display, but will remain on call throughout the day in case of emergencies. All area First Responders in uniform will be provided complimentary admission to the event.

The Southern Pines-based Heritage Flag Co. will once again provide custom flags that will be used for various recognitions during the event. The Heritage Flag Co. has been involved with the event since its inception, and founder Heath Trigg has been a huge supporter of the men and women who serve our country. His beautiful flags are proudly displayed around the world, and The Heritage Flag Co. is one of several community businesses that contribute their support to the many military foundations and organizations.

The 1½ day Festival D’Avion, hosted at the Moore County Airport, includes a celebration concert featuring the Ultimate Eagles Tribute Band, Runway 5K Race/Walk, special aircraft exhibits, scheduled aircraft fly-overs, Warbird displays, precision jump team exhibitions, programmed entertainment and a special scheduled fly-out of all participating aircraft. This fly-out has become a crowd favorite as it ends Saturday’s day-long festivities.

Classic cars and trucks will also be displayed during the event. A variety of food and beverage options will be available from area and regional food trucks, craft beer breweries, North Carolina wineries and vendors. The Festival Kids Zone will offer a huge variety of themed attractions, obstacle courses, games and slides.

For additional information:

Long-time CVB Leader Honored for Dedication to the Tourism Industry

PINEHURST, NC (February 11, 2020) – Beverly Stewart, executive vice-president of the Pinehurst, Southern Pines and Aberdeen Area Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB), was honored on Tuesday night with the Southeast Tourism Society (STS) Beacon Award at its annual convention in Little Rock, AR.

The Beacon Award is presented annually by STS and recognizes an individual who best exemplifies outstanding leadership in the pursuit of excellence and who has advanced the tourism industry. Steward was cited for her dedication to the tourism industry for more than three decades and considers factors among nominees for overall accomplishments, innovation, performance, empowerment of others, integrity and respect.

“To be recognized among peers who I not only deeply respect but call friends means so much to me and shows true connections among those in our industry and region,” said Stewart. “Travel and tourism, at its heart, is about discovering what is best about your community, and sharing it with others. Engaging visitors in the rich personality of my home area – the people, the culture, the food, and the energy, continues to be a privilege and an incredible honor.”

“This is a much deserved honor for Beverly and we could not be more proud of her achievement and recognition,” said Phil Werz, president and CEO of the Pinehurst, Southern Pines, Aberdeen Area CVB. “As I travel around the state, there is not one person who does not know Bev and all she has done to advance tourism, not only in the Pinehurst, Southern Pines, Aberdeen area, but also throughout the state of North Carolina. She is an asset to our industry and one of the reasons why leisure and business groups choose to return to our area time and time again.”

Stewart has served the Pinehurst, Southern Pines and Aberdeen Area Convention and Visitors Bureau since it opened in 1987.

For more information about the CVB, visit

Art Walk and Auction to Be on Display February 8 – April 2 in Southern Pines

SOUTHERN PINES, NC (February 04, 2020) – Before golf in the Pinehurst, Southern Pines and Aberdeen area became the world-class and globally-recognized destination it is today, equestrian pursuits dominated the Sandhills region of North Carolina. And for the first time, ponies will roam the streets of downtown Southern Pines – Painted Ponies. The inaugural Painted Ponies Art Walk and Auction runs from February 8th through April 2nd as 10 five-foot tall fiberglass works of art will line Broad Street for all to view as visitors walk the downtown area. After the display is over, the ponies will be auctioned off with the proceeds benefitting the Carolina Horse Park Foundation’s educational and environmental programs.

On February 8th from 1-3pm, there will be a Painted Ponies Reveal Party and Walking Tour at The Mews located at 280 NW Broad Street in downtown Southern Pines. The reveal party is complimentary and open to the public.

“The Carolina Horse Park is proud to bring the Painted Ponies Art Walk to downtown Southern Pines. It demonstrates our commitment to our local businesses and artists while also highlighting our equestrian heritage and community,” said Bryan Rosenberg, chairman of the board for the Carolina Horse Park. “The Art Walk has been a phenomenal community effort. We look forward to visitors and residents enjoying the painted ponies while they line Broad Street and generously support the auction on April 4th.”

Local businesses are coordinating to sponsor the painted ponies that will be placed at 10 locations in downtown Southern Pines. Artists from the Pinehurst, Southern Pines and Aberdeen area have donated their time and talent to transform the fiberglass ponies into exquisite works of art. Once the display ends on April 2nd, the painted ponies will be removed and auctioned off. The auction will take place on April 4th at Big Sky Farm in Southern Pines.

Painted ponies theme names include: Horses Connect Us All; Horsefeathers; The Chief’s Pony; Living in the Pines; Water for Horses, and more. Local businesses sponsoring the art walk and auction include: McPeake Hotels; C Cups Cupcakery; The Pilot newspaper; Audrey Wiggins/Better Homes and Garden Real Estate Lifestyle Property Partners; Opulance of Southern Pines; WhitLauter Estate Jewellry; McDevitt Town and Country Properties; Pinnock Real Estate and Relocation Services; Longevity Massage and Bodywork Therapy Center; The Country Bookshop; Ashten’s Restaurant; Moore Equine Feed and Pet Supply; English Riding Supply; Cabin Branch Tack Shop and BB&T Bank.

Visitors viewing the Painted Ponies Art Walk are asked to use the hashtag #PaintedPoniesCHP when taking pictures and posting them to social media.

The Carolina Horse Park (CHP) Foundation is a 315 acre, nationally recognized premier equine competition venue and preservation preserve located in Hoke County, NC. Founded in 1998 as a 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit organization by equestrian enthusiasts, CHP is dedicated to the preservation of open space for equestrian events, as well as, educational and recreational purposes. Throughout the year, CHP runs approximately 28 weeks of equestrian events and 10 educational and nature events with visitors and competitors traveling primarily from the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic regions.

For more information about the Painted Ponies Art Walk and Auction, visit