UNIQUE IN THE MIDWEST T he Mason City Municipal Airport is located six miles west of downtown Mason City, Iowa, in Cerro Gordo County. In February 1942, the City of Mason City purchased 312 acres of land for a new airport, and began construction. It saw its first official landing in March 1945. At the time, the Airport had Mason City Municipal Airport two paved runways, associated taxiways, and a small ramp area. A remodeled farmhouse was used as the first terminal during the Airport’s dedication on June 22, 1946. During the 1950s, the Airport saw commercial airline service from several airline companies, including Mid-Continent, Braniff, and Ozark. The Mason City Airport will forever be remembered as the site of a famous crash which killed musicians Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson, along with pilot Roger Peterson, in the early morning hours of February 3, 1959, after a concert in nearby Clear Lake.