Deer Park Municipal Airport

The Deer Park Airport was built during World War II. The $1,250,000 airfield was dedicated in August, 1944 with over 3,000 people gathered to witness the celebration. It was stated that the airfield's three 6,100' runways could handle the largest planes in existence, such as the B-29, and those contemplated in the immediate foreseeable future.

The airport saw little aviation activity during the years following the war. In April 1950, the airport gained a new reputation as a Drag Strip. Many people in the Inland Northwest knew the airport only as a drag strip!

In 1959, the conflict between the United States and Russia was brewing and the US was looking for sites for installation of the Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles. The Deer Park Airport was selected, but the military wanted to place it right in the middle of the runways. The City Council stood firm against the prospect of shutting down the runways and offered property to the northeast of the active aircraft movement area. The missile was installed, but later decommissioned in 1965 when the Atlas missiles were replaced by the Titan II and Minuteman Missiles.

The aviation uses the airport gradually grew through the following decades. There are currently over 100 based aircraft and 74 hangars. Two aircraft maintenance shops provide top notch maintenance and restoration services. Two flight schools train pilots from private licenses through to instrument and commercial ratings. The airport serves as a fire tanker base in the summer fire season, offering the surrounding community quick response to fire events. Flight training from Spokane airports comprises a significant portion of the aircraft operations. There has also been an increase in the number of business jets using the airport as an alternative to the larger airport in Spokane. A Global Position System (GPS) instrument approach makes the airport available for landings during inclement weather.

The airport is considered an essential component of the National Plan of Integrated Airports within the United States. As such, it is eligible for federal funds to maintain and improve the facilities. Several million dollars in federal and state airport aid grants have been awarded to the City of Deer Park over the past two decades, allowing the City to rebuild two of the original runways and upgrade navigation aids. The State of Washington has designated the Deer Park Airport as a Regional Service airport due to its size and proximity to population density.

The airport, previously managed by Partner Enterprise, LLC for 22 years, is now managed by Schultz's Aviation, LLC, a contract management firm which has been appointed by the City Council. A seven member advisory board guides the Deer Park City Council decisions about development and policy.