By JASON CAMPBELL
209 staff reporter
STOCKTON – That quarterly bonus check came in and it’s burning a hole in your pocket.
What are you going to do with it? Put it towards the mortgage? Put it into your retirement?
Why not Vegas?
Fortunately for those who want to have a little bit of fun and try and turn that money into enough to pay off the entire mortgage, you don’t have to go very far in order to hop that flight for Sin City and a few days of high-stakes fun.
You only need to drive to Stockton.
For several years now, low-cost carrier Allegiant Air has flown routes between the Stockton Metro Airport and McCarran Airport – which serves Las Vegas – to give those looking for a quick weekend getaway the chance to save the heartache of Bay Area traffic or crowded airports with long security lines that push right up to the edge of boarding time.
And while the Las Vegas-based company centers their business on getting people into and back from the Entertainment Capital of the World, those aren’t the only places you can travel to from Stockton.
Maybe it’s spring training that was on your calendar. If so, you’re in luck because Allegiant flies to Phoenix. Maybe you wanted to take the family to Legoland or the San Diego Zoo? Good news – they fly there too.
The Stockton Metropolitan Airport has also been the landing site for arguably the most famous airplane in the world.
Shortly after extending the runway, in 2006, President George W. Bush came to Stockton to help fundraise for a Republican Gubernatorial candidate – landing in Air Force One on the newly lengthened runway and taxiing right up to the edge of the terminal with what has been described as a mobile command and control station capable of running the United States of America from 30,000 feet.
Stockton, however, has much more going for it than a Presidential visit and a few flights for zealous gamblers and weekend warriors looking to spend some extra money that they managed to save.
With the addition of the two Amazon fulfillment centers – one in Tracy and one in Patterson – the airport has become a major cargo hub for the world’s largest online retailer. The ability of having an airport located nearby means that shipments depart daily, and the items needed to restock the massive facilities arrive at the airport just as frequently.
It’s also the home to the AG Spanos Jet Center which has hosted political dignitaries and business tycoons alike. A variety of separate aviation companies offer corporate jet services, and Farmington Fresh built near the airport to make it easier to fly their agricultural products out to different markets in the United States. Federal Express also operates a shipping facility across the street from the airport, and has flights that arrive and depart daily.
To contact reporter Jason Campbell email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 209.249.3544.