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City staff praised for weekend efforts
Mega Motor Weekend a success, officials say
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The World War II P-51 Mustang “Gunfighter” takes off for an aerial demonstration at the Great Bend Airfest Saturday afternoon. City officials Monday night praised the efforts of those who made the Airfest and all of the Mega Motor Weekend possible. - photo by BY DALE HOGG Great Bend Tribune
We couldn’t do that without all the staff and volunteers. A huge ‘thank you’ to all who helped make Mega Motor Weekend a tremendous success.
City Administrator Kendal Francis

Members of the Great Bend City Council and other officials praised the efforts of all those involved with the myriad events this past weekend, dubbed the Mega Motor Weekend.

“We couldn’t do that without all the staff and volunteers,” City Administrator Kendal Francis said. “A huge ‘thank you’ to all who helped make Mega Motor Weekend a tremendous success,”

The weekend included: 

• The Great Bend Airfest that celebrated the 75th Anniversary of the historic World War II Army Airbase in a big way with dozens of warbirds soaring the skies and lining the tarmac. The triennial event took place Friday through Sunday at the Great Bend Municipal Airport.

“Despite the weather, 2018 Airfest was a great success and well attended,” Francis said. “What an amazing event for Great Bend.” 

Councilman Brock McPherson wanted a letter of commendation added to Airport Manager Martin Miller’s file, as well as offering support for the work of Community Coordinator Christina Hayes.

“Kudos to all the city staff,” Councilwoman Jolene Biggs said.

Councilman Dan Heath was at the fest pretty much from start to finish. “I have never seen people so focused and dedicated to working for the city,” he said.

“I was impressed,” Heath said. “I was proud to be affiliated with the city.”

• The National Hot Rod Association Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series wrapped up Sunday after a week that saw sine 800 dragsters at the historic Sunflower Rod and Custom Association Dragstrip. 

“There was an amazing number of cars,” Biggs said. “Hopefully, slowly, we can get more of this.”

In preparation for the races, the city patched many of the parking areas at the facility, an effort appreciated by McPherson. There had to be some minor repairs during the event, but everything held up well.

“The Lucas Oil was phenomenal as well and brought Great Bend a lot of national attention in the race world,” Francis said.

• The sixth-annual Hahn Brothers Motocross Shootout took place Friday and Saturday at the Great Bend Expo Complex.

Council members said, from top to bottom, the expo area had never looked better. “We appreciate the staff for what they did,” Biggs said.

She also noted the efforts of fire fighters and law enforcement officers who were stretch thin covering the festivities along with their regular duties.

Fire Chief Luke McCormick thanked the other fire departments in Barton County that helped with the airfest and races, and out in the county as well. “They helped fill in the void.”

The weather may not have cooperated Friday and Saturday, but that didn’t prevent the events from drawing crowds. “Overall Mega Motor Weekend was a weekend that can be mentioned as a success for many years,” Francis said.

“We want to express our gratitude from everyone,” Great Bend Chamber of Commerce President Jan Peters said. “It really was a special weekend.”

Pre-event estimates indicated the weekend would draw 10,000-15,000 visitors to Great Bend. Hayes said she would have a wrap-up report for the council when it meets next on Oct. 15.