First ever Plane-Pull pulled off at Stewart


STEWART AIRPORT – United Way of Dutchess-Orange, in conjunction with host site New York Stewart International Airport and a myriad of sponsors and partners including FedEx, pulled off the first ever plane-pull on Saturday.

Nine 20-person teams competing for the fastest time in this first of its kind event in the Hudson Valley featured a FedEx Boeing 757 jet, thick rope and a ton of team spirit.

“This is a brand new event for us and it will be the only one in our geographic area,” explained Jeannie Montano, president of United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region. “We really wanted to do something different that would engage our community and offer a competition that was both fun and challenging.”

Montano, who hopes to make this an annual event also thanked FedEx for providing the jet plane that was pulled by the teams as well as Stewart for providing the location.

“You don’t see people pulling a FedEx 757 around too often,” said Airport Manager Ed Harrison.

“It’s a great competition. It’s a fun thing. It’s great for FedEx and United Way and New York Stewart International. It brings the community together for the great work that United Way does,” he said.

Registrants could sign up as teams or as individuals. Regardless of registration format, each individual registrant was required to pay their $20 registration fee, and agree to raise $200 via a crowd-funded fundraiser. This was accomplished by way of personal fundraising pages provided by United Way to each registrant. The page was shareable via social media and participants also got a handy toolkit with information about the event and how to
fundraise successfully.

In attendance at the event was State Senator Susan Serino who spoke briefly prior to the start of the pull. “Everything you guys do is a credit to our community,” Serino said of United Way. “Thank you to Stewart Airport for hosting this; it was the first time I’ve ever seen something like this being done so I was really excited thank you everybody from the bottom of my heart.”

Among the teams in attendance were Central Hudson, Hannaford, Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union, FedEx, McKESSON NY Metro fellow key sponsor Geodis and eventual winner Poughmentum, a coalition of business owners and volunteers from Poughkeepsie.

In total, this first of its kind event for the Hudson Valley raised over $45,000 for the various charities supported by United Way.

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