LATROBE (KDKA) – A Spirit Airlines plane lifted off from Arnold Palmer Regional Airport Thursday packed with nearly 200 passengers excited to be on the inaugural flight to Orlando, Fla.

A family from Monongahela was the first to check in.

“It’s great – I love going to Disney World, so this is just much more convenient for us,” Eric Burger said.

Also on the first flight was a group a students from the Karat school in Greensburg visiting Disney for the very first time.

A ceremonial ribbon cutting was held at the airport. People from across Westmoreland County gathered to watch Mickey and Minnie do the honors.

“They invited me here today to bless the plane,” Archabbot Douglas Nowicki, of Saint Vincent College, said.

Orlando is the third city Spirit Airlines will now serve out of Latrobe. The plane received a warm welcome when it touched down.

“It’s a great time for the region,” Gabe Monzo, a spokesman for the airport said. “The people that are here – God bless them. They’re going down to Florida, non-stop service, free parking and we’re happy to have it.”

People from as far away as Canada have been coming to Westmoreland County to take advantage of Spirit’s discounted fares and the airport’s free parking.

The flights are so popular that a parking lot expansion is in the works and a new hotel is going up across the street.

“Something we’ve been rooting for years – to get a non-stop from Latrobe to Orlando – can’t beat that,” Arnold Palmer said.

Spirit Airlines
Arnold Palmer Regional Airport
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