Truckee Tahoe Airshow to be canceled

Airport board directors have said they intend to cancel this year’s Truckee Tahoe Airshow & Family Festival.
Justin Scacco/

The annual Truckee Tahoe Airshow & Family Festival won’t be making a return to the area in 2021.

On Wednesday, July 28, the Truckee Tahoe Airport District Board indicated it would cancel this year’s airshow following last week’s fatal plane crash near the airport.

The board will hold a special meeting on Tuesday, when it will vote on whether to officially cancel the festival, according to Director Rick Stephens.

“This decision was reached in an effort to assist those in our community, as well as airport staff recovering from the tragic aircraft accident of July 26, 2021,” said Kevin Smith, Truckee Tahoe airport district general manager. “In an abundance of caution, as well as respect for those most affected by the accident, the airport district board and airport staff agree that the cancellation of the 2021 airshow is in the best interest of the community and district. The district would like to thank all those who put forth so much time and effort into preparing for this annual event.”

Six people died in the crash — Thomas Ebaugh, 56, of Lakeville, Minnesota; Kevin Kvarnlov, 34, of Mendota Heights, Minnesota; Christine Thomas, 33, of La Quinta; Ryan Thomas, 38, of La Quinta; Alberto Montero De Collado De La Rosa, 43, of Mexico; and John Dunn, 62, from Dallas, were all confirmed to have died. Ebaugh and Montero De Collado De La Rosa were pilots on the aircraft, the other four individuals were all passengers, according to the Nevada County Sheriff’s Office.

The Truckee Tahoe Airshow annually raises funds through sponsorships, vendor booth sales, VIP hospitality tent ticket sails, and the sale of other miscellaneous items. Funds raised go toward helping Truckee Optimist Club, KidZone Museum, EAA Chapter 1073, and others. Since 2012, the airshow has helped raise more than $350,000 for local youth. The goal of this year was to raise $60,000.

“These groups work very hard. They’ve worked very hard all year. They use this money from the airshow to run a lot of programs in your community,” said Smith at the board meeting. “The airport is in a different position than it was on (July 26), and we really need to take into account what people have been through.”

“I think we need to cancel the airshow. I think we need to pay the nonprofits so that they continue the good work … being at the crash site, and listening to all the people,” Stevens said. “We talk about doing something. This will affect many people but this is something we can do right now, and I believe that we should cancel it.”

Justin Scacco is a staff writer at the Sierra Sun. He can be reached at

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