One thing we’ve noticed is fly-ins making a comeback with several new events cropping up. I believe this is great for Airport Community Relations and if joined with a visit from one of the bombers like the B17 from Liberty Foundation (http://www.libertyfoundation.org), the B17 from EAA (http://www.eaa.org/eaa) or the fleet from Collings Foundation (http://www.collingsfoundation.org) – this makes it all the better.
|Sanders Argo Smoke Show|
After 9/11, so many airports were closed off to the community; these events are a great way to bridge that gap again. At my local airport, we coupled it with a Young Eagles event where we flew over 100 kids that day. Everyone gets a chance to learn something and maybe get a flight in a different or unusual aircraft.
Dream Machines in Half Moon Bay added antique and custom automobiles and motorcycles. This plus rides in helicopters and old time biplanes make this event very special each year.
The Big Shows are just around the corner. The month of May brings us one of my favorites, the Planes of Fame Airshow. This year, they will have the Bremont Horsemen doing both their F-86 Sabre Show and their now famous P-51 show. And of course, Sean D. Tucker in his Oracle Challenger – which you don’t want to miss. This year’s event will be a “Salute to the Mighty 8th” Air Force.
Mojave Air and Space Port held a very cool event in April. An Experimental Fly-in coupled with several World Record Attempts! Lee Behel set three records in his Pereira GP-5 – including the C-1b 3KM, 15 km and 3km Time to climb – beating old records held by Jon Sharp, MacCay Beeler and Bruce Bohannon in that order. Mike Patey in his beautiful 780 Lycoming Lancair Legacy broke two records in the C-1c category -- for 1000 km and 2000 km speed records. Zach Reeder set a 5000km speed record in the Rutan Catbird.
|Lee Behel - record setting GP-5|
Unfortunately, Tom Aberle’s record attempt failed, but I bet he’ll be back.
More Good News
With Sequester a thing of the past, we have the Thunderbirds and the Blue Angels back this year – and the demo teams from around the country. Finally.
So, grab that floppy airshow hat and I’ll see you on the flight line!
Special thanks this month to Anthony Taylor for allowing the use of his photos.
And this column is dedicated to Dave Plumb.