News & Events

June 14, 2016:
B-17 Flying Fortress Comes to Our Airport June 21

Image of B-17 bomber


The B-17 Flying Fortress “Sentimental Journey” comes to the Springfield Airport June 21. The aircraft will be open for public tours Tuesday, June 21 through Sunday, June 26, from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.


A donation of $5 is suggested for a tour. To schedule a ride, and to find out about the cost of a ride, call: (602) 448-9415, or email:


The aircraft exhibit will be in the airport’s general aviation complex, near the OzAir Charter hangar. The street address is 2525 N. General Aviation Avenue, Springfield. Directions: drive to the end of W. Kearney Street (5000 west) and turn right on N. General Aviation Avenue. Follow signs to exhibit parking. Parking is free.


“Sentimental Journey” is one of ten airworthy B-17s remaining out of over 12,000 manufactured for combat during World War II.


After the war “Sentimental Journey” flew for training, testing and at-sea rescue missions and was eventually sold for surplus and used as a fire bomber. In 1978 the aircraft was purchased by a Commemorative Air Force (CAF) member and donated to the newly formed CAF Arizona unit. She was meticulously restored and is today maintained in tip-top condition and operated by all-volunteer crews from the membership of CAF Airbase Arizona.

January 12, 2016:
More People Than Ever Flying from Springfield

2015 was a record year at the Springfield airport — the total passenger count was 919,044. It smashes the old record set in 2005 of 888,738, and is a 9% increase over 2014 passenger numbers.


“Over 70,000 more passengers used the Springfield airport last year than in 2014,” says Brian Weiler, airport director of aviation. “This level of passenger growth is very good news and a strong indicator of a much improved local economy.”


2015 was marked not only by a record number of passengers, but also by several air service improvements.


“American Airlines started new twice-daily service to its major hub in Charlotte, and all the airlines are using some bigger planes in the market,” says Kent Boyd, airport marketing and air service development director. “Some of those bigger planes even have first class seating.”


“The move away from 50-seat jets is industry wide, but it’s accelerated in Springfield due to strong demand,” says Boyd. “Demand is so high that over the past four years airlines have increased the number of seats for sale in Springfield by nearly 16%.

Percent Change in Seats at SGF and Peer Airports 2012-2015


  • Springfield (SGF)
    + 15.9%


  • Baton Rouge (BTR)
    - 4.1%
  • Columbia, SC (CAE) 
    - 9.6%
  • Eugene (EUG)
    + 2.4%
  • Flint (FNT)
    - 4.7%
  • Huntsville (HSV)
  • Lubbock (LBB) 
    - 11%
  • Panama City (ECP) 
    - 10.7%
  • Roanoke (ROA) 
    - 13.6%
  • Shreveport (SHV)
    - 3.6%
  • Wilmington (ILM)
    - 8%



Source: Boyd Group International


At the same time the number of passengers grew by over 25%. The bottom line is that Springfield is one of the few small cities in the country to see significant passenger growth.”


2016 is shaping up for additional growth as well —


“In April, American will add a fifth daily flight to Chicago, giving Springfield a total of 9 flights a day to Chicago — that’s five a day on American, and four a day on United. Taking that into consideration, along with the addition of Charlotte service last November, it all but guarantees that 2016 will be another year of growth,” says Weiler. “If the trend continues as expected we should exceed a million passengers within the next few years.”


Passenger growth is good but it brings challenges — last year airport parking lots frequently ran out of spaces.


“That’s a good problem to have,” says Weiler. “We’re currently designing and will have a parking lot expansion project under construction later in 2016.”


Four airlines serve Springfield: Allegiant, American, Delta, and United. They provide non-stop flights to: Los Angeles, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver, Dallas, Chicago, Atlanta, Charlotte Tampa/St. Petersburg, Orlando, and Punta Gorda/Ft. Myers.

November 2, 2015:
Springfield-Charlotte Air Service Begins Thursday

New air service begins at the Springfield Airport this Thursday, November 5, with non-stop flights between Springfield and Charlotte, North Carolina. The inaugural flight is Thursday afternoon on American Airlines.


American’s Charlotte service will make it easier to connect to the Northeast United States. Right now Springfield Airport (SGF) customers generally fly through Chicago or Atlanta to reach Northeast destinations. Charlotte offers another option. New York City, Philadelphia, Orlando, Pittsburgh, Boston, Washington, D.C. These are just some of the cities now available to Springfield through American’s Charlotte hub.


The addition of Charlotte service virtually assures that SGF will see a record number of passengers this year, with a projected total of 914,000. The previous record year was 2005, with 888,738 total passengers.


“This sort of growth is counter to what’s going on in the industry,” says Michael Boyd, SGF’s air service consultant. “When compared to airports of similar size across the country, SGF is by far one of the nation’s most prolific airports in terms of scheduled flights and seat capacity growth."


Boyd says the addition of Charlotte service will likely make 2016 another record year for SGF.


“The Charlotte service on American should increase the total passenger count by approximately 36,000 in 2016. If other Springfield air service stays the same, or increases, it’ll be another record year.”


In 2020 Boyd expects SGF to have more than a million total passengers.


“The strength of the Southwest Missouri economy is clearly a main driver for this growth,” says Brian Weiler, the airport’s director of aviation. “All the airlines serving Springfield are doing well here. They’re adding bigger planes to the mix, and flights are frequently sold out.”


The addition of Charlotte service gives SGF an average of 25 daily departures, and eleven non-stop destinations. Eight non-stops is the average number for similar sized airports.


Four airlines serve Springfield: Allegiant, American, Delta, and United. They provide non-stop flights to: Los Angeles, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver, Dallas, Chicago, Atlanta, Charlotte, Tampa/St. Petersburg, Orlando, and Punta Gorda/Ft. Myers.

July 2, 2015:
A July 4th Present to Springfield from American

July 2, 2015


American Airlines begins new, non-stop service between Springfield and Charlotte-Douglas International Airport beginning November 5th. Tickets go on sale July 5.


This new service gives the Springfield airport 11 non-stop destinations. The average number of non-stop destinations, for cities similar to Springfield, is eight.


“This new service is great news for the community and region,” says Charlotte Hardin, chair of the airport’s governing board. “It gives Springfield customers access to American’s second largest hub in North America, when measured by departing seats. Access to Charlotte offers Springfield customers a world of possibilities.”


Right now Springfield airport customers generally fly through Chicago or Atlanta to reach Northeast destinations. The new American service to Charlotte gives customers another option. New York City, Philadelphia, Orlando, Pittsburgh, Boston, Washington, D.C. These are just some of the cities now available to Springfield through American’s Charlotte hub.


American’s connecting flights from Charlotte also allow for outstanding international connectivity to many of Springfield’s top international destinations, including London, Frankfurt, Paris, Rome, Dublin and Madrid. Connecting flights to the Caribbean, and Latin American destinations such as Mexico, Jamaica, Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Cayman Islands, and Brazil are available as well.


“Support from the business community and our congressional delegation helped make this new service a reality,” says Brian Weiler, airport director. “Before starting new service one of the things airlines look for is business support and interest from lawmakers. I want to thank Senator Claire McCaskill, Senator Roy Blunt, and Congressman Billy Long, along with the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce and its economic development arm, the Springfield Business Development Corporation (SBDC).”


“Today’s announcement is about progress toward becoming an even better place to do business,” says Tom Rankin, with Rankin Development and board president of the SBDC.  “With connections to Charlotte new economic opportunities open up.  We are convinced that our business community will continue to respond to these opportunities by filling nearly every plane that comes in and goes out of our airport.”


The addition of Charlotte service gives the airport an average of 25 daily departures, flying to five major hub airports: Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, and Denver. The new Charlotte service will increase the number of airline seats in the market by 36,000 annually.


“Springfield and American have a long relationship. It began in 1946 and has endured for 69-years. It continues to grow,” says Hardin. “In the aftermath of the recession passenger growth at Springfield is unusually strong — we’ve had 17 straight months of passenger growth. We view the new American service as a vote of confidence in Springfield and Southwest Missouri.”


Tickets for the new Springfield-Charlotte route go on sale this Sunday on the American website:


June 1, 2015:
A Jam-Packed Summer at the Springfield Airport

Spring is plenty busy at the Springfield airport — in April alone the total number of passengers rose 4.5%. That’s compared to the same month last year. The upswing promises to continue this summer as airlines bring more flights and bigger planes to Springfield. This growth comes after a banner 2014 when passenger numbers grew at an annual clip of 12%.


“Allegiant is the real show stopper,” says Brian Weiler, the airport’s director. “It’s increasing its summer schedule here a whopping 57% over last year.”


Allegiant flights to Orlando get the biggest bump. In June the airline will fly between Springfield and Orlando six days a week. That’s up from four days a week last June.


Allegiant Springfield Flights 2014 2015
June flights 51 78
July flights 57 85
August flights 33 59

“The increase in the Allegiant schedule will probably give the airport double digit passenger growth in June, July and August,” says Kent Boyd, the airport’s marketing and air service development manager. “It’s a strong indicator of continued improvement in the regional and national economies. People wouldn’t be buying Allegiant’s vacation packages in numbers like this if their budgets were hurting.”


Not to be left out, the other Springfield airlines are bringing bigger planes to the market. American, Delta, and United are all shedding some of their 50-seat regional jets:


  • In June Delta begins using an Airbus 319 for one of its four daily flights to Atlanta. The 319 has 126 seats. It replaces a Boeing 717 (113 seats)
  • In June United begins using a Bombardier CRJ-700 for one of its four daily flights to Chicago. It has 66 seats
  • In July Delta replaces another 50 seat jet; this time with a Bombardier CRJ-900. It has 76 seats
  • In July United replaces another 50 seat jet to Chicago with a CRJ-700
  • In July United begins using a CRJ-700 for one if its four daily flights to Denver
  • In July American begins using CRJ-900s on two of its seven daily flights to Dallas
  • In August United replaces another 50 seat jet to Denver with a CRJ-700

“Here’s the bottom line: this summer the airlines will shed a total of seven 50-seat jets from their Springfield schedules,” says Boyd. “That’s good for a couple of reasons. Number one: the airlines wouldn’t bring bigger jets here if they couldn’t fill them.  It shows that demand for air travel in Springfield is high. The second reason is comfort. Many people hate 50-seat jets because they’re cramped and stuffy. The bigger planes are a welcome relief.” Will 50 seat jets come back in the fall flight schedules? Boyd says it’s likely.


“Some 50-seaters will come back as the summer travel season winds down. There’s not much doubt about that. But some may stick around. Airline schedules for the fall are preliminary at this point, but they all show some bigger planes in the mix.”


Four airlines serve Springfield: Allegiant, American, Delta, and United. They provide service to ten non-stop destinations: Los Angeles, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver, Dallas, Chicago, Atlanta, Tampa/St. Petersburg, Orlando, and Punta Gorda/Ft. Myers.


March 18, 2015:
Public Invited to State of the Airport Presentation

2014 was a very good year at the Springfield-Branson National Airport (SGF) — it was the fourth busiest year in the airport’s history — and 2015 promises more of the same. Against this backdrop, the director of the airport, Brian Weiler, presents the State of the Airport Address on Thursday, March 19, at the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce.


“Ever since the recession started we’ve had mostly gloomy news to report,” says Weiler. “The economy was tough on the airline and airport industries, so it’s nice to have good news to report to the community.”


The airport’s total passenger count for 2014 was 846,324. That’s a 12% increase when compared to the year before. It’s also the best yearly percentage increase of commercial service airports in the region:


  • Kansas City International:  + 3%
  • Northwest Arkansas: + 10%
  • St. Louis Lambert:  - 1.5%
  • Tulsa: + 4%

Besides the improving airline economy Weiler will also report on the recently completed expansion of the airport’s general aviation facilities, and the general state of the airline and airport industries.


When: Thursday, March 19, 3:30 pm


Where: Springfield Chamber of Commerce, 202 S. John Q. Hammons Parkway, Springfield


Four airlines serve Springfield: Allegiant, American, Delta, and United. They provide service to ten non-stop destinations: Los Angeles, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver, Dallas, Chicago, Atlanta, Tampa/St. Petersburg, Orlando, and Ft. Myers.

March 18, 2015:
General Aviation Expansion Ribbon Cutting

The Springfield airport cuts the ceremonial ribbon for its general aviation redevelopment project on Friday, March 20. The ceremony begins at 10:30 a.m.


The expansion project redeveloped about 12 acres of airport property and made it “development ready” for new general aviation airplane hangars. The general aviation complex (GA for short) is that part of the airport which caters to business/corporate aircraft.


The expansion helps remedy a shortage of GA hangar space, which has existed for several years, by making ground ready for eight new hangars. Having land available for hangar construction is important for future economic development — adequate GA facilities is something business prospects often look for.


“General aviation is one those community assets that’s out of sight and out of mind,” says Tom Hilmes, Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce. “But it’s of vital importance to the business community — especially when it comes to economic development. Businesses that consider moving here often want to know if the airport has a place to hangar their corporate aircraft.”

Funding for the project came courtesy of a $5 million aviation grant from the Missouri Department of Transportation. The airport will provide $565,563, making the total cost of the project approximately $5.6 million. MoDOT aviation grants are funded by taxes on aviation fuel sold in Missouri.


Speakers at the event include Robert Stephens, Springfield mayor, Joe Carmichael, commissioner with the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission, and Bob Dixon, state senator, District 30.


Who: Springfield-Branson National Airport


What: Ribbon Cutting for General Aviation Expansion Area

Where: 2525 N. General Aviation Avenue 

When: Friday, March 20. Ceremony begins at 10:30 am


January 15, 2015:
2014: A Very Good Year

2014 was the fourth busiest year in the 69-year history of the Springfield-Branson National Airport (SGF). The total passenger count for the year: 846,324. That’s a 12% increase in passengers when compared to the year before.




Total Passengers


































“Not only was 2014 one of the airport’s best years, it’s the best year the airport’s had since the beginning of the economic recession,” says Brian Weiler, director of aviation. “It’s a strong indication that the local and national economies are improving.

Every month of 2014 showed strong growth with July and September leading the way: July passenger numbers were up 13.5%. September registered growth of 16.3%.


The success of 2014 comes after several years of gloomy news in the airline and airport industries.

“The airport’s passenger numbers have been flat or negative for the past five years,” says Kent Boyd, airport marketing director. “The last time we had double digit growth was in 2005.”

During the recession, and in its aftermath, airlines made big cuts at airports across the country and SGF was no exception. In 2011 alone the airlines cut the supply of seats at SGF by 21.5%. Since then supply has been flat. “And that’s where we’re bucking the trend,” says Boyd. “Airlines are actually bringing seats back to our market because they see strong demand here.” In 2014 the airlines increased the number of available seats at SGF by 5.3%.” Nationwide, airlines added 1.8%.


Will double digit passenger growth continue in 2015?

“It’s doubtful — double digit growth isn’t the norm at any airport,” says Weiler. “In 2014 the airlines basically figured out that they’d cut too much in Springfield. So they spent the year putting seats back in the market. That helped grow our passenger numbers.”


The airlines are bringing even more seats to Springfield in 2015. Advance schedules show a 4.5% increase for the first half of the year. Nationwide, the supply of seats will be up 1.8%.


“That local increase is further evidence that the Springfield air market is stable and getting stronger,” says Weiler.


Other airport metrics improved in 2014: the amount of aviation fuel pumped at the airport grew by 7.6%. It’s the first fuel increase since 2011.


Additionally, the number of aircrafts fueled grew by 4.2%. That’s the first increase since 2006.


Four airlines serve Springfield: Allegiant, American, Delta, and United. They provide service to ten non-stop destinations: Los Angeles, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver, Dallas, Chicago, Atlanta, Tampa/St. Petersburg, Orlando, and Ft. Myers.

December 11, 2014:
Holiday Flying Tips & Changes in Security Screening

The holidays are the time of year when infrequent (or first time) fliers fill the nation's airports. With that thought in mind the we offer the following tips for infrequent fliers - 


  • Use an airline app. Nearly all airlines have free smart phone apps that let customers make and change reservations. The apps also offer real-time flight updates and downloadable boarding passes. Using an airline app can save lots of time at the airport.
  • Get to the airport early - at least an hour-and-a-half before your flight is scheduled to leave. That's generally plenty of time to get checked in, through security, and to the gate. You must be checked in to your flight no later than 30 minutes before departure.
  • Don't over-pack. Take only what you absolutely need -- an overstuffed bag can slow down the security screening process. Carry-on items can be no bigger than 9" X 14" X 22" or a total of 45 linear inches.
  • Before you get to the security screening line make sure you have a government issued photo ID if you're 18 or older. Make sure the name on your boarding pass matches the name on your photo ID.
  • Don't wrap presents. Security screeners may unwrap them for inspection.

Speaking of security screening ...

This holiday season sees a change in passenger security screening. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is now using millimeter wave scanners at the Springfield airport to screen passengers before they board the plane.


TSA says millimeter wave scanning reduces the need for physical pat downs and results in a smoother flow of passengers through the security checkpoint.


A millimeter wave scanner is a large booth with glass walls. Passengers step inside and hold their arms over their heads for a few seconds. The scanner looks for explosives and weapons without physical contact. It takes about 20 seconds to scan a person, while a pat-down takes two to four minutes.


Older versions of this technology caused privacy concerns because the screening images were anatomically correct. TSA officials say the new machines (image to the right) show generic outlines of people, without the anatomic detail.


If someone doesn't want to be scanned they can opt-out. According to TSA those opting out will be screened using "alternative methods," including a physical pat-down.

September 16, 2014:
Airport Aces Safety Inspection 10th Year in a Row

For the tenth year in a row the Springfield airport has received a discrepancy free safety inspection from the Federal Aviation Administration. On Monday the FAA recognized the airport by awarding it the “Airport Safety Enhancement Award.”


The award goes to airports which receive discrepancy free safety inspections three years in a row. Getting one discrepancy free inspection is a great accomplishment for any airport. Doing it ten years in a row is a rare achievement.


"Every airport employee is, in some way, responsible for the safety of our customers," says Shawn Schroeder, airport director of operations.  "Having their hard work validated by the FAA is much deserved."


The annual FAA safety inspection is a demanding review of everything at the airport that affects aircraft safety.


FAA inspectors review a long list. It includes runway pavement condition, airfield marking and lighting, the readiness of the airport fire department, snow and ice removal, fencing, the height of grass, and wildlife control.


Wildlife was a hot topic with the public five years ago after a flock of Canada geese brought down a US Airways flight after take-off from New York City (the plane landed in the Hudson River with no loss of life). But airports have talked about wildlife for years — as in, "how do we control it?"


The airport must show FAA inspectors that it knows what wildlife is on the airport, and that it has a plan to deal with it.


“Runway inspections are one way we track wildlife,” says Troy Morehouse, airfield maintenance worker. "You look for any remains of an animal hit by an aircraft. We collect it and record where it was found on the runway.” Even small birds get attention. “Smaller birds can be very dense. So when a plane hits them it’s almost the equivalent of getting hit by a baseball.”


Dealing with wildlife is just part of the airport's role in keeping planes safe.


When an aircraft is on the ground it depends on airport lights, signs and paint to figure out where to go in a safe manner. The Springfield airport has about 1400 lights along the edges of the runways and taxiways. Add to that several hundred signs, along with miles and miles of painted lines. If you could put all the paint in a six inch line it would be 40 miles long. And all of it — lights, signs, paint — has to be nearly perfect.


After so many years of acing the inspection is there any way to make things even better? Morehouse says there is ...


"We all try to better ourselves every day and improve on what we've done. That may sound kind of crazy — we've done so well the past 10 years — I mean what is there left to improve on? There's always something to improve on."