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Home Sports Game Story Boys Varsity Football VIDEO: Skydiving Into Rye's Nugent Stadium from 3,000 Feet

VIDEO: Skydiving Into Rye’s Nugent Stadium from 3,000 Feet

(PHOTO: Jeff Provenzano, RHS' 94 about to jump from the helicopter skid at 2,940 feet.)
(PHOTO: Jeff Provenzano, RHS’ 94 about to jump from the helicopter skid at 2,940 feet. Notice to red Garnet flare on his left foot.)

[Scroll down to see video of Provenzano’s full skydive]

Jeff Provenzano has been thinking about skydiving into Rye’s Nugent Stadium since he graduated from Rye High School in 1994. On Saturday, his dream came true. A professional stuntman and member of the Red Bull Air Force, Provenzano delivered the Rye – Harrison game ball via a skydive.

(PHOTO: Red Bull Air Force team member and RHS '94 grad Jeff Provenzano.)
(PHOTO: Red Bull Air Force team member and RHS ’94 grad Jeff Provenzano.)

“To skydive over Rye – I fantasized about that very early on with skydiving,” Provenzano told MyRye.com on Sunday. “I was like, wow, how cool would this be to jump and fly over someplace like Rye High School or Playland. And then of course, the Rye Harrison game – best excuse, reason. I’m going to try to get permission from the town or from whoever, I would think you would love to see someone land at the high school and deliver the game ball.”

Earlier this year, Provenzano reached out to Eric Byrne, superintendent of the Rye City School District. After five minutes of explaining his professional bona fides, Byrne was hooked. “He reacted exactly the way I thought,” recounted Provenzano. “He was, like, dude, let’s make this happen.”

(PHOTO: Jeff Provenzano, RHS' 94 has left the helicopter. Notice the game ball he is carrying in his left hand.)
(PHOTO: Jeff Provenzano, RHS’ 94 has left the helicopter. Notice the game ball he is carrying in his left hand.)

Approvals & The Weather

While Byrne went to get the blessing of the Board of Ed, Provenzano spent the last month securing FAA approval. The paperwork takes about a month to sort out. The FAA wants to make sure you are clear of air traffic coming out of White Plains and LaGuardia airports that is operating at 4,000 or 5,000 feet. On Saturday, the helicopter took Provenzano to 2,940 feet before he launched himself from the skid downward to Nugent Stadium.

The weather also had to be clear. “The weather was one of those really, really clear clear days. You see so far. Really good air quality day. Winds were kind of like light and variable, so that was great,” said Provenzano. Part of the go/no go decision was wind under ten miles an hour. He explained Nugent Stadium, because of the structure, the school building the trees and the hill across the Post Road, acts as a bowl. Because of this you can have winds that can shift 180 degrees from just above to just inside the bowl.

(PHOTO: Beautiful day to skydive into the Rye Harrison football game.)
(PHOTO: Beautiful day to skydive into the Rye Harrison football game.)

Future Jumps in Rye?

Asked how he could possibly one-up himself in a future performance, Provenzano has ideas at the ready. Wingsuits, night shows, an aerobatic helicopter, having a helicopter landing area at the school so the crowd sees the take off too.

“I would love to do this again,” said Provenzano. “It would be amazing. In two years, it’ll be our 30th reunion.”

One of his teammates on the Red Bull Air Force is Amy Chmelecki, a Mamaroneck High School Class of 1994 grad. He says maybe he will bring Chmelecki – “she knows half of my class.”

It will be like old home week, only in the sky.

[Keep scrolling for the see video of Provenzano’s full skydive.]

(PHOTO: What a view.)
(PHOTO: What a view.)

(PHOTO: Inbound to Nugent Stadium to deliver the game ball.)
(PHOTO: Inbound to Nugent Stadium to deliver the game ball.)

(PHOTO: Big smiles from Jeff Provenzano RHS '94 after landing at Nugent.)
(PHOTO: Big smiles from Jeff Provenzano RHS ’94 after landing at Nugent.)

(PHOTO: Greeting the referee and Rye Athletic Director Susan Reid Dullea.)
(PHOTO: Greeting the referee and Rye Athletic Director Susan Reid Dullea.)

(PHOTO: Mission accomplished, delivering the game ball.)
(PHOTO: Mission accomplished, delivering the game ball.)

Watch the full video:

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