BUTTE — January 6, 2022, was a historic and snowy day on the tarmac of Butte’s airport - it marked the first "second flight" in 15 years to the Mining City.
For the past few years, the airport only had one flight - Delta SkyWest to Salt Lake City. SkyWest has now added a United flight to Denver, which will provide more access to cities in the eastern United States.
“It opens us to a lot more commerce and other things that are available out there for us, so it’s a really exciting day to bring United in,” said Butte Chief Executive J.P. Gallagher.
"This is exciting, it’s a big day. It’s been 15 years since we’ve had more than one airline servicing Butte, so we couldn’t be more excited,” said Bert Mooney Airport manager Pam Chamberlin.
Some passengers said they were excited to learn they were on the first flight and excited to be in Butte.
“It’s so good. I can’t wait to go get a pasty and some Pekin and a pork chop,” said passenger Kelsey Lee.
Those departing on the first United flight out were equally excited.
“I can’t believe it. It’s my first time in Butte, get to do all this, meet the mayor, first flight, just an incredible experience,” said passenger Killian Lawson.
City officials are expecting this is a good sign for Butte’s economic future.
“Things are going to happen here, you know, people are looking to us for opportunities to expand or relocate businesses and I think just the expansion of air service will really help in that regard,” said Gallagher.