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Visitors flock to air museum
[January 11, 2013]

Visitors flock to air museum

Jan 11, 2013 (The Pueblo Chieftain - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- Visitation at the Pueblo Weisbrod Aircraft Museum continues to fly higher due to new offerings.

Visitor numbers in 2012 approached 20,000, up from 8,000 as recently as 2008, the volunteer group that runs the city museum said Thursday at a Greater Pueblo Chamber of Commerce meeting. Also of note, the museum recently moved into the No. 1 slot on website TripAdvisor's online user poll of top Pueblo attractions, the group says.

"We're proud of that," museum volunteer Don Blehm told chamber members at their monthly luncheon at the Pueblo Convention Center. The museum is located at Pueblo Memorial Airport.

Blehm, who serves as the group's president, said the museum -- moved largely indoors into aircraft hangars in recent years -- continues to add and adjust exhibits monthly in an effort to boost interest.

Also, the museum recently began working to add more interactive displays ahead of a special push planned to attract more school tours, he said.

The improvements are making the museum a true destination attraction, "If you don't come out every couple of months, you're missing out," Blehm said.

Going forward, the museum's biggest challenge is beefing up its ranks of volunteers, who help restore and maintain the aircraft and equipment, Blehm said. "We need help," he said.

Greater Pueblo Chamber of Commerce CEO Rod Slyhoff echoed the volunteers' group assessment that the museum is hitting new heights. "They're doing some amazing things out there," he said. Elsewhere at the luncheon, the chamber marked the start of a new year by inviting a number of local businesses and nonprofits to offer a motivational talk to members.

The presenters included a motivational speaker and operators of a nutrition store, a Zumba studio and the Arc Thrift Store that benefits developmentally disabled workers.

___ (c)2013 The Pueblo Chieftain (Pueblo, Colo.) Visit The Pueblo Chieftain (Pueblo, Colo.) at Distributed by MCT Information Services

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