north side of Runway 9/27, early Wednesday morning, we find all sorts of
activities. Lots of people preparing for the day. Making breakfast,
stowing camping gear, hanging towels to dry. A few planes are arriving
at this early hour, and some are cranking up to depart.
Sweeny of Smithfield, Rhode Island. Photo by Jack Hodgson
Sweeny is straightening up his campsite beside his Diamond Star. John
is from Smithfield, Rhode Island. He flew into EAA AirVenture Oshkosh
this year by way of visits to family in Pittsburgh and Fulton County,
Ohio. The trip was about seven flying hours.
especially liked visiting Fulton County.
was a delightful little airport," he says. "Fulton County,
just outside of Toledo. Itís got a nice long paved runway and a
crossing grass runway. Itís kept in immaculate shape. Itís
self-serve, but the guy from the FBO came out and pumped my gas for me.
They just treat you real well."
his sixth visit to the Oshkosh fly-in.
have quite a few friends that we only see here. From all over the
country. You meet them year after year, so we always come back to look
Diamond Star is a 2003 model he bought new from the factory.
a great airplane. Fantastic airplane. I fly it about 200 hours a year. A
lot of pleasure flights. But I own a real estate title company, so I do
work from Rhode Island out to the islands, Marthaís Vineyard,
Nantucket, Block Island. Also New Hampshire, and up into Maine."
been flying since 1986. In addition to the Diamond, heís also owned an
Archer, and he has a handful of hours in a Stearman.
also building an RV-8. When asked how thatís going, he smiled and
rolled his eyes. Laughing he said, "Great. Iím about two and a
half years into it, and Iím hoping to have it up here, realistically,
within three years."
Heís a member of EAA
Chapter 1363 in Quonset, Rhode Island.
many, attending the AirVenture is a big part of his year.
year you leave and then you start counting weeks till Oshkosh again to
plan your vacation around it."
getting ready for another day at AirVenture is Gerald Hubert. Gerald
flew his 1960 Skyhawk to Oshkosh from Ann Arbor, Michigan.
the relatively short trip with one stop for fuel before flying across
Lake Michigan on Sunday.
his fourth year to Oshkosh, and one of his favorite moments each visit
is "the drum roll when I get out of my plane."
his main goal is to get some needed supplies.
just shopping around. Looking at all the airplanes. Buying a few items.
Thatís probably the main thing that brought me back, I needed a few
items, like a parachute and a new headset."
addition to the Skyhawk, which he just bought in April, Gerald has a
Skybolt, which he spent four years building and just finished. He has
about 10 hours on it.
a member of EAA Chapter 113 at Willow Run Airport.
The Andersons of
Photo by Jack Hodgson
Anderson is sitting in his camp chair scanning the newspaper while
his wife is at the showers and his 2-1/2-year-old son sleeps.
is from Calgary, Canada. He arrived to AirVenture 2008 as part of
"a loose flock" of 12 planes from the Calgary Flying Club.
arrived Sunday morning after spending the night in Alexandria,
Michaelís fourth time to Oshkosh. His memories of past fly-ins include
the excitement of the arrival procedure. "Coming in behind a couple
of Tri-Pacers in a Cardinal can be exciting when things start slowing
remembers the visit a few years ago by White Knight and SpaceShipOne.
This year he had hoped to get a good look at the Martin Jetpack, but the
large crowds prevented that.
made a lot of modifications to his airplane.
a 1968 Cardinal thatís been upgraded. Itís almost a one of a kind;
there are maybe four out there that have a 200-horse fuel-injected
engine. Ours is one of two that are still 100 percent Cardinal from the
firewall forward. Itís the engine and prop combination from a 1975
Cardinal RG. Under a Canadian LSTA weíve got an upgraded useful load
of 2,500 pounds."
of course, the Cardinalís roominess and handling makes it perfect for
my family of two and a half."
his son, Aidanís, first visit to the fly-in. At 2-1/2 years old, heís
still a little young to fully appreciate the goings on, but he enjoys
the excitement and activity of KidVenture.
home field is Springbank, just outside of Calgary, and he is a member of
EAA Chapter 14. Heís also a member of Ultralight Chapter 114, but
oddly he doesnít fly ultralights.
but theyíre real fun guys. And they maintain a good grassroots feel
for the flying that I like to stay in touch with."
the "Around the field" archive at www.AroundTheField.net.