Thursday, October 31, 2013

Future of Thunder on the Lakeshore Up In The Air: Manitowoc County Airport (KMTW), Wisconsin

Manitowoc - For more than 20 years, big crowds have turned out for "Thunder on the Lakeshore" high above Manitowoc County airport. But the future of the show is uncertain after its headline military acts were grounded last year due to the federal sequestration budget cuts. 

Thunder on the Lakeshore producer Curt Drumm says he is concerned about the show being able to continue without the important military acts.

"It's a great show for the community. But when you have a big show with a lot of expenses and the people don't come and you lose a lot of money, you can't continue," Drumm said "Our attendance was down 70 and 80 percent last year primarily due to the military not showing up."

Drumm estimates the show lost close to $60,000 last year.

He says for now things are in a holding pattern as the air show waits to hear back from federal officials about whether military acts will resume at events across the U.S. including Manitowoc.

"We have to decide what we're going to do, when we find out what the military is going to do," he said.

While Drumm is holding out hope the show will take to the skies again, he expects the Thunder on the Lakeshore board to make a final decision in December.

"If we get the air show back that's great, we're looking forward to it. If it doesn't, maybe we have to skip a year and see what 2015 brings," he said.

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