There’s been a slight change of venue for President Donald Trump’s rally in Missoula on Thursday, October 18. It will now be held at Minuteman Aviation which is just west of the Missoula International Airport’s terminal. The event was originally scheduled to be held next door at Neptune Aviation.
Neptune officials tell Montana Public Radio the White House wanted Trump to speak in front of Air Force One. Minuteman Aviation’s aircraft pad can handle the weight of that aircraft, while Neptune’s can not.
Parking details for the event are still being hashed out. Missoula International Airport Director Chris Jensen says organizers are working to secure a large lot that’s adjacent to, and just east of the airport.
“And they’d likely run some kind shuttles or busses or something back and forth that would take people to Minuteman," Jensen says.
Missoula County Commission Chair Dave Strohmaier is only slightly relieved Trump’s rally will be held at the airport. He says a motorcade to the center of town would have been particularly expensive and disruptive.
“Hopefully, the fiscal impact to Missoula County will be lessened, but I have no doubt that there still will be some.”
Strohmaier, who ran as a Democrat in 2016, anticipates emergency services will be on standby during President Trump’s visit, which he says will likely require lots of overtime pay for staff.
“Even if it’s one penny going towards this, it is a partisan political rally. It’s not the president coming here to conduct officials business on behalf of Montanans,” Strohmaier says.
Ticket information for the Trump rally in Missoula can be found here. The event begins at 6:30 p.m., doors open at 3:30 p.m.
Correction: This post has been updated. An earlier version of this post had the wrong date for the president's visit.