About Porterville Airport
Porterville Municipal Airport is a department within the City of Porterville, in Tulare County, CA. The Airport was founded in 1946 when the property was conveyed to the City from the United States Government.
Previously, the Airport was operated as the Porterville Army Airfield. The Army Air Corps opened the airfield in September, 1942 and was used by the United States Air Force 4th Air Force. It was used as a Lemoore Army Airfield training sub-base and for coastal patrols utilizing B-25 aircraft. Here's a look back to 1962.......
Since 1959, the airport has continued its role as a guardian, serving as an air attack base for both the United States Force Service and Cal Fire. It is also a host to general aviation and corporate aircraft.
Porterville Airport Management
Porterville Airport is operated by the Porterville City Council. General management is provided by John Lollis, Porterville City Manager while the operational management of the airport is administered by Jim McDonald. Mr. McDonald began his work at the Airport in 1987. Full-time personnel including Dan Lenahan & Andy LaBonte assist with administrative and fueling duties.
Porterville Airport's Role in the Community
The Porterville Airport is a guardian for the Southern Sierras with aircraft stationed at a newly developed joint USFS/CalfFire Air Attack base. The air Attack Base is the home supporting aircraft ranging from S2, P2V, and P3, plus an assortment of mission-specific aircraft deployed on critical fire protection campaigns.
The ecology and resources of the prominent Sierra Mountains are protected including the famous General Grant, General Sherman Sequoia Gigantia, and the walk of the 100 Giants. Porterville Municipal Airport has earned its role as the “Guardian of the Ancient Sequoias.”
The Airport also provides a base for commercial aviation. The rich agricultural region surrounding the airport with its oranges, other tree and field crops, dairies and poultry provide the basis for significant air operations to and from Porterville. The same facility serves a growing service and industrial base which includes development adjacent to the Airport itself.
The Porterville Airport is a platform for community economic development. The Tule River Economic Development Corporation is developing land to the West of the Airport. A newly developed business park is hosting a new Southern California Edison Service Center. The Porterville Fair has signed an agreement with the City of Porterville to open up a new fair grounds to the Airport’s Southwest. To the East of the Airport is a large service center for the Porterville Sheltered Workshop. To the North, many businesses operate in the Porterville Business Park including Southern California Gas Company, the United States Forest Headquarters for Sequoia National Forest, Gridley Machine Shop, Poly Portables, Endurequest, and ARC. To the North, buildings have been recently refurbished to serve Youngs Trucking, a large commercial trucking firm.
The Airport is the base for a long-standing community of interest. The Airport hosts fixed base operators who provide general A&P services and develop and manufacture aircraft parts. The Porterville Airport hosts the Eagle Mountain Air Show in June of each year. This is a gathering of both the Porterville local community, and also the aviation community from California and Nevada. Always, a good time is had by all.
Points of interest near the Airport include Lake Success, the Giant Tree Monument, Sequoia National Forest, Tule River Indian Reservation, Eagle Mountain Casino, California Hot Springs, and Golden Trout Wilderness. Each year in February, the Porterville Airport receives significant jet and large twin traffic from the Tulare Farm Show.