In researching Wednesday’s column on the Niagara District Airport, I had occasion to dip into The Standard’s clippings from yesteryear.
It was fascinating reading about all the failed attempts to run a commercial passenger service out of the airport. Equally amusing were the positive comments made by various airline execs as passenger numbers failed to meet expectations. They had to know the jig was up, but felt obliged to put on a happy face.
Here, though, is my favourite comment from these clippings. It came during the official ribbon-cutting ceremony for Nordair’s air service to Montreal.
Jack Pickersgill, the federal transport minister, was on hand to chat up the potential of Niagara District Airport. To better access funding, Pickersgill urged local yokels to make the Niagara airstrip attractive.
Said Pickersgill: “This area more than any other is the front window for our great neighbour, the United States. Everything you can do with gardens, statues, paintings — or mini-skirts — to make this the most attractive airport in Canada will have my moral support.”
Moral support for mini-skirts???
I couldn’t find the actual photo, but here’s the newspaper clipping of Air Niagara’s inaugural flight that appeared in The Standard in 1970.