HOLLAND, Mich. (WOOD) - Ryan Garvelink hopes this time he gets to see President Barack Obama when he visits Holland on Thursday.
Garvelink and his co-workers at a machine shop across from Tulip City Airport already were visited by police for a quick security check.
When the president was last in Holland a year ago, he attended the groundbreaking ceremony for the LG Chem plant. This time, he'll tour the Johnson Controls plant, and the people nearby are getting ready.
But the last time Obama was here, Garvelink said, all the workers were told they had to stay indoors when the president passed. But on the day of the event, a police officer let them come out to watch.
"It was pretty interesting," he said, and looks forward to being "able to do it again."
He added there's already been a dress rehearsal of government helicopters that checked out the airport where Air Force One will land.
The President is going to helicopter into the Tulip City Airport on Thursday. It is normally an airport used for general aviation, not commercial flights.
Airport personnel told 24 Hour News 8 the arrival of President Obama is going to have a big impact on the small airport.
"Actually, we'll be shut down for a few hours during the event," said Mick Osborne from the Tulip City Airport. "So, actually, we're going to lose some traffic that day so, it goes with the territory."
An official notice to airmen was sent out to pilots on Tuesday, stating the air space within 10 miles of the airport will be closed on Thursday afternoon.
The small airport is planning on sending some employees home early. Other people who work near the airport, like those at Gensink Steel, hope they'll be able to witness the presidential visit.
"We brought all our employees out along 64th Street to be able to see the procession," said John Maxson, COO of Gensink Steel. It's "exciting any time the leader of our country visits West Michigan."
The presidential visit even got the city to finish up a final application of blacktop on 48th Street between the airport and the plant. It was supposed to be completed on Saturday. Now, it looks like it will be done by the time the president arrives on Thursday.
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