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Fargo AirSho Officially Canceled - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Fargo AirSho Officially Canceled

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 After government cuts forced the iconic Blue Angels to be a no-show at the Fargo AirSho this summer, organizers had a tough decision to make. That was whether to proceed with another act or cancel it altogether. Thursday they made the decision and announced the Fargo AirSho is canceled.

 Fran Brummund, the Fargo Air Museum Director, recalls how the volunteers would line up for the chance to volunteer on the weekend when the Blue Angels would show up to Fargo. "They would practically polish the aluminum right off the B-25 Miss Mitchell because they're so excited to be a part of it," says Brummund.

 But not this summer. The B-25 and other airplanes normally included in the AirSho won't be coming. Instead, they are grounded because of the sequester. Dick Walstad, Co-Chair of the Fargo AirSho, says they got the news a few weeks back.

 "A couple weeks ago we were informed the Navy, the Blue Angels had canceled their season. They just plain ran out of the money. There wasn't any money to buy the fuel to fly the planes. Sequester cut the budget that much," says Walstad.

 Local businesses will feel the effects of one of the biggest events of the summer being scrapped, too. At Buffalo Wild Wings in North Fargo, the manager says it's one of the busiest weekends of the summer and difficult to lose. Over at Labby's Grill and Bar, the owner Dan Labernik says it's a loss for really everyone. "Well I just think it's a loss for the community for starters. And obviously it's a loss for business especially in the north side," says Labernik.

 While Walstad says the Fargo AirSho isn't a huge money generator for the organization that puts it on, he says it does plug a lot of money back into the community. "We can make 100 thousand dollars on a show. If it's run well for the year. But also we put about another 100 thousand into the community," says Walstad.

 Every two years the Blue Angels as a part of the Fargo Air Sho draw anywhere from 20-30 thousand people into the community. And all those people that show up, help create funding locally for the Boy Scouts, YMCA, and Roger Maris Cancer Center that the AirSho donates to.

 Walstad says it's a bit painful to realize so many will have to be neglected due to our government not putting things together. "Really a sad situation that our country can't keep those planes in the air because a deal couldn't be met in D.C."

 To date the 10 Fargo AirShos have contributed about 500 thousand dollars towards local non profits. But the Fargo Air Museum and other non-profits will have to do without for now hoping that the Air Sho will land again, in two more years.

 Looking ahead the Fargo AirSho committee says they plan on applying for the Blue Angels to come back in 2015.

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