The Memorial Day Weekend Salute to Veterans Celebration airshow, which has been held at the Columbia Regional Airport for the last 30 years, will move to Jefferson City Memorial Airport in 2019.
The Columbia airport is planning runway construction during May of next year, which would interfere with the airshow, said Britt Smith, operations division director of Jefferson City Public Works.
“As a result, they were looking around for other opportunities and asked if we were willing to host them,” Smith said.
Smith believes Jefferson City will be a good fit for the event and appeal to both residents of Columbia and Jefferson City. He also said he sees the airshow having a positive effect on Jefferson City.
“Anywhere from 10,000 to 30,000 people attend the show, and anytime you have that kind of an influx of people into any community, it obviously has a positive economic benefit,” he said.
Mary Posner, a driving force behind the event, said she has conducted airshows in Jefferson City in the past with great success. She is president, chairman and CEO of Memorial Day Weekend Salute to Veterans Corporation.
“My appreciation for them doing it knows no bounds,” Posner said about Jefferson City’s willingness to hold the event.
When asked if the venue change would be permanent, she said: “I cannot commit to that. But I will tell you this, as a young lady, when I was escorted to a dance, I always came home with the man I went with.”