Since 1972, Offutt Air Force Base in Bellevue has hosted the Defenders of Freedom Air Show and Open House. Colonel John Rauch is the 55th Wing Commander and says the 2013 show has been canceled due to financial challenges and sequestration.
Colonel Rauch says it was a very difficult decision to make and they hope the air show will return in the future. He says it is also unfortunate they can not hold an open house as Offutt receives a lot of support from the community. In 2012, the air show and open house cost about $200,000 to host and Colonel Rauch says they have not received an exact dollar figure of how sequestration will impact Offutt but they expect an update by the end of the month. He says cuts are expected and the money used for the air show will be needed elsewhere.
The air show was scheduled for August 24th and 25th and no future dates have been set. The Defenders of Freedom Air Show is one of many canceled this year due to federal budget cuts.