This Everett, WA airport hosts the Boeing factory tour and is home to five museums specializing in airplane restoration, antique aircraft and warbirds. The airport, a magnet for general aviation activity, also employs more than 30,000 people at Boeing, Goodrich Aerospace and other businesses.
The project would be completed in June, 1939 with two crossed runways, but the Army Air Corps would occupy the field in the spring of 1941 to defend the Bremerton Shipyard and Boeing plant in Seattle. The field was named for 2ndLt. Topliff Olin Paine (1893-1922), an Everett High School and University of Washington graduate who would become a pioneering pilot in World War I and an early air mail pilot.
After World War II, the airport was transferred back to Snohomish County. But the Korean War would bring an Air Force squadron and the airport became Paine Air Force Base in 1951. In 1955 e airport would again revert to county control.
The airport has recently created a $10 Paine Field Passport allowing a visitor to see each of four museums (Future of Flight, Historic Flight, Flying Heritage Collection and the Museum of Flight Restoration Center) within one year at a 20% discount. It also provides a 20% discount to gift shops and cafes at each of the museums.
Also, once each year in May the airport conducts a major open house during General Aviation Days. In 2011, it is Saturday, May 21.
Future of Flight
The museum, which sits at the northwest corner of Paine Field, is the home of the Boeing Tour Center. It has an excellent view of down onto the Boeing assembly buildings, paint buildings and the flight line where planes are finished with engines and interiors. It also looks down upon the longest runway at Paine Field, so it has excellent views of airplanes taking off and landing. On a clear day Mt. Baker is visible to the northeast — and Mt. Rainier to the south.
Exhibits include a several interiors from Boeing aircraft and some advanced light aircraft. The museum also has a store with a wide variety of Boeing-logo products and aviation gifts.
Flying Heritage Collection
Tuesday-Sunday during non-summer hours
In the tradition of Paul Allen’s other museum efforts, each aircraft is well documented with its role during the war.
This museum is at the south end of Paine Field near old Air Force base housing. A number of facilities remain from the airport’s days as an air base, including the old recreation center and weather forecasting buildings.
Legend Flyers Restoration Facility
Everett, WA 98204
This restoration group has a singular mission: restoration of the first fighter jet put into production, the Messerschmitt Me 262.
The jet-powered ME 262 would only reach operational status in the summer of 1944, near the end of World War II but it could outrun Allied aircraft by as much as 100 mph and was able to shoot down more than 500 planes with the loss of only 100 of the Messerschmitts.
One of the German fighter jets has been refinished so far, with two others scheduled. Because of the concentration on restoration work, there are limited tour opportunities, which need to be pre-scheduled.
Museum of Flight Restoration Facility
9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Tuesday – Thursday & Saturday (September – May)
Before airplanes ever make it to the well-known Museum of Flight on Seattle’s Boeing Field, they are restored 20 miles to the north at the Paine Field facility, which is open to visitors. The restoration center sits on the east side of the field, near the entrance to general aviation facilities and is marked by a Learjet sporting the museum logo on the lawn.
Both commercial and military aircraft are in the process of restoration.
Historic Flight Collection at Kilo 6
Check for longer summer hours
Future additions to the collection will include a Beechcraft Staggerwing biplane; Douglas DC-3; and a Canadair T-33 Silverstar jet trainer.
In addition to Boeing facilities, the airport houses a wide range of other business and recreation activities. While the new aircraft are equipped with jet engines, Precision Engines continues to supply older aircraft with radial engines. And B.F. Goodrich’s Aviation Technical Services, at the south end of Paine Field, provides maintenance services, aircraft modifications and overhaul services to airlines and cargo services.
Access to the general aviation services at Paine Field, including Regal Air, Northwest Aviation and Fliteline is from the east side on Airport Way (128th Street SW). Everett Community College also operates its Aviation Maintenance school on the east side of the field.
How to Get There
For facilities on the east and south sides of the airport, exit at Airport Way, south.
For the Future of Flight/Boeing Tour Center, continue to 84th Street SW and turn left.
Bus service is available from the Mukilteo ferry landing. The Mukilteo Sounder station is about ¼ mile from the ferry landing.
Though the roads around Paine Field are four- or five-lane highways, there are bicycle lanes along each of them.
There is no commercial airline service into Paine Field at this time. General aviation aircraft can taxi up to several of the museums. Rental cars are available at Flightline in the main terminal. Customs inspections are available only when pre-scheduled.
Commercial Service Issues
Though there is no commercial service into Paine Field at this time, airport management has been trying to encourage commercial flights, against the opposition from surrounding communities.
Dining & Accommodations
Next door to the Future of Flight/Boeing Tour Center is a Hilton Gardens Inn. However, most other nearby hotels are just west of the field in Mukilteo. Hotels are listed by proximity to Paine Field, with the closest at the top:
While there are some fast food locations near Paine Field, there is none on the airport (the Jet Deck, a popular pilots’ hangout, having closed). The best dining is just west of the airport in Mukilteo, which has dozens of restaurants and several wine bars. A selection of some of the top locations, list by proximity to the airport:
Arnie’s: seafood and American fare in downtown Mukilteo, overlooking the park and ferry.(425) 355-2181
Other Nearby Sites