Fort Wayne International Airport (FWA) hosted a celebration of the famous FWA tradition of welcoming passengers to Fort Wayne with a locally baked cookie from Ellison Bakery, by handing out its three millionth cookie.
Passenger Holly Jones, along with her mother and two children, was randomly selected as the lucky winner as passengers deplaned the arriving Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg flight on Allegiant Air. The flight arrived to FWA at approximately 3:09pm. Honorary Hospitality Host, Icy D. Eagle, mascot of the Fort Wayne Komets Hockey Team, handed out the three millionth cookie and ushered in the celebration. Holly was not only awarded the special cookie, but also received a gift basket full of gifts and goods from FWA, a voucher good for roundtrip airfare for two on Allegiant Air, and a supply of cookies from Ellison Bakery.
Passengers on the selected flight were also given a special gift from the Airport as a part of the celebration.
“It’s exciting to get to be a part of something historic,” said Jones. “We’re looking forward to enjoying these cookies and taking another trip sometime soon!”
“Welcoming passengers to Fort Wayne is our way of making each passenger feel welcome to our city with the “Hoosier Hospitality” and attention to customer service that FWA is known for,” said Scott Hinderman, Executive Director of Airports. “We appreciate the continued partnership with Ellison Bakery as we celebrate this milestone.”
The awarding of the three millionth cookie also coincided with the debut of brand new FWA cookies. Now every arriving passenger will be welcomed to Fort Wayne with a package featuring a number of miniature cookies, rather than one small cookie. These packages feature flavors such as Birthday Cake and Chocolate Chip, with different varieties rotating frequently. Ellison Bakery will continue to produce the FWA cookies.
“In my prior work experience, I have traveled all over the world and was amazed on my first flight into Fort Wayne when a passenger was telling their young child that he would be able to get a free cookie in just a few minutes because Fort Wayne is the only airport that gives away free cookies,” said Stephanie Chattillion, Ellison Bakery CEO. “Ellison and Fort Wayne Airport have been partnering for over 8 years and we are proud to continue our partnership to provide a welcome home treat to the local Community and visitors into the Fort Wayne area.”
While the FWA Hospitality Host program has been put on pause indefinitely due to COVID-19 out of an abundance of caution for our dedicated Hosts, passengers can still expect to receive the cookies they know and love when they arrive at the airport. A cookie kiosk is located right at the security exit and passengers may help themselves to a special “welcome to Fort Wayne” treat.