July 19, 2014 at 1:06 pm

People-powered plane pull marks airport milestone

Grand Rapids — The Gerald R. Ford International Airport is celebrating its 50th anniversary with some tug-of-war, aircraft edition.

The plane pull competition on Saturday helps mark the milestone. The event aims to determine whether 25 people can get a handle on a 220,000-pound aircraft, with money from team registrations going to charity.

Other activities at the Grand Rapids airport open house include skydivers, displays, children’s activities and giveaways.

Contests and events have been held throughout the year.

Celebrations for the 1963 opening of the airport, then called Kent County Airport, were postponed after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, who died a day before the planned events. The airport still opened but without the fanfare.