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TribBlog: Sparking an Apology

They're sorry, folks. Spark Energy says it's sincerely sorry for causing such a literal roar at this morning's inauguration ceremony.

Spark Energy's banner that flew low above the Texas inauguration on Jan. 18, 2011.

They're sorry, folks. Spark Energy says it's sincerely sorry for causing such a literal roar at this morning's inauguration ceremony.

Inauguration guests and officials got a loud surprise from above during the swearing-in Tuesday, as a low-flying single engine plane bearing the banner of Spark Energy circled the Capitol grounds just as Gov. Rick Perry was speaking. Anxious inauguration staffers were visibly annoyed, and guests were distracted by the loud buzz of the plane, which drowned out several minutes of the governor's remarks. The banner, which read "Spark Energy God Bless Texas," certainly caught attention, but not much of it was positive.

"I thought that it was in bad taste, personally," inaugural spokeswoman Sarah Beck told The Dallas Morning News. Spark's gotten the message. The company tweeted apologies soon after the morning festivities then later issued this formal statement:

Spark Energy sincerely apologizes to Governor Rick Perry, the Inauguration team, and all Texans for any disruption at the Governor’s Third Inauguration Ceremony caused by an airplane salute.
 
“Our intention is to support the Governor’s Inauguration and to celebrate Texas,” said Keith Maxwell, President and CEO of Spark Energy. “As soon as we realized the disruption, we immediately stepped in to rectify it.  We in no way wanted to deny those in attendance the opportunity to hear Governor Perry’s vision for his third term in office.  In fact, Spark Energy is one of the companies that has benefited from business-focused initiatives led by the Governor. We truly wish him the best in his upcoming term.”

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