By WAYNE THOMAS
The 43rd annual Tullahoma Kiwanis Club Independence Day fireworks and air show celebration is planned for Friday, June 29, club member Mike Rutherford recently told the Tullahoma Airport Authority.
“We will open the gates at 3 p.m. and will have a static display with the air show at dark,” Rutherford said.
According to club member Ed Hoge, this year’s event promises to be “the most ambitious event ever,” with Nashville musicians “Live from Ventura Boulevard,” supplying the entertainment, an air show with Eastern European aircraft staging a simulated jet air combat and the evening culminating in the “spectacular fireworks display.”
According to Hoge, “Live from Ventura Boulevard” takes its listeners back to the late 70s and early 80s era, with a set list that includes favorites from Boz Scaggs, Steely Dan, Little River Band, Pablo Cruise, Ambrosia, Christopher Cross, the Bee Gees and others.
Also at the event will be static displays and concessions. Gates open at 3 p.m., with festivities beginning at 6 p.m., at which time the Kiwanis Club will honor Korean War veterans.
Those attending are urged to bring chairs, sunscreen and umbrellas. Coolers are allowed, but no alcohol will be allowed on the airport premises.
The event will be held rain or shine.
Also during the Airport Authority meeting, Alderman Mike Norris told Authority members that the airport is getting “a lot of attention” in the economic development circles.
He noted that during a meeting of the Tullahoma Area Economic Development Corp. (TAEDC) there has been discussion of how the airport is contributing to the development of the area.
Norris informed authority members they have the ability to obtain bonds to build speculative hangars.
He added that if a spec hangar is built for business, then Daryl Brady, director of TAEDC, would help promote it.
“I like the idea of a spec building out there,” board member Steve Worsham said.
Norris added that the Coffee County Industrial Board has been asked to help fund a spec building but “so far we have had no response from them.”
The Airport Authority has plans for future development northwest of the airport for industrial growth. That area would cover approximately 160 acres.
Currently, the Momentum Foundation has a business hangar facility located at the airport that covers about 13,000 square feet and contains five or six planes.
Vanderbilt Medical Center’s LifeFlight helicopter has a permanent station at the airport and has personnel stationed there 24 hours a day.
“We would love to have more industry out here,” board chairman John Miller said.
The board members noted that several cargo planes are landing on a weekly basis at the airport for businesses in Manchester.
No landing fee for Bonnaroo travelers
In other business, the board decided not to charge a landing fee for planes that might be flying into the airport during the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival next month. Several of the board members noted that other airports charge but the Tullahoma airport does not.
The board decided to provide those planes with fuel and advise the pilots, who usually ask how much the ramp fees are, that they can make a donation.
Wayne Thomas may be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org