City of Manassas

The following were among actions taken at the Sept. 24 meeting of the Manassas City Council. For more information, call 335-8211.

AIRPORT CONTROL TOWER -- The Manassas City Council agreed to pay $5,000 for a 55-foot-tall air control tower it plans to disassemble at an airport in Arapohoe County, Colo., and reassemble at the Manassas airport, at an additional cost of approximately $189,000, according to Airport Manager Ollie G. Cramer.

Manassas does not currently have a control tower, which is used to help guide planes that are landing and taking off airports. Instead, pilots at the airport communicate via a radio frequency to alert other pilots to their movements.

Buying the used control tower instead of a new one will save the city $38,000 to $50,000, according to Cramer, who said he hopes to have the tower in operation by early spring.

The state has agreed to reimburse the city for 80 percent of the tower's cost. The Federal Aviation Administration will fund the equipment and air traffic control staff for the tower.

MUSEUM FEES -- The council approved entrance fees for the city's new $1.6 million historic museum on Prince William and Main streets, which is scheduled to open this winter.

A $2 fee will be charged for adults, and $1 for children 6 to 17 years old, people 60 and older, and individuals in groups of 10 or more. Admission will be free for children 6 and younger and for Friends of the Manassas Museum, who make annual contributions to the museum, and members of their immediate families.

Admission will be free of charge on Tuesdays.

The fees were recommended by the council-appointed Historical Committee. A member of that committee, Ron Stine, told the council he expects the fees to raise about $30,000 to $40,000 during the museum's first year of operation.

HALLOWEEN OBSERVANCE -- The council, in a 5 to 1 vote, agreed for the first time in two years to officially observe Halloween on the day recognized nationwide, even though it falls on a school night. Halloween is Wedneday, Oct. 31.

In an effort to avoid holiday activites that interfere with school work, the city since 1988 has observed Halloween only on Saturday nights. It was the only Northern Virginia jurisdiction to do so.

However, residents complained that the city's efforts did not stop children from knocking on doors on the official holiday. Consequently, city residents were forced to contend with two Halloween nights.

Casting the dissenting vote was Robert Browne, who argued that continuing to observe Halloween only on a weekend night would show Manassas's commitment to educating its youth.