|Dick VanGrunsven, founder of Van's Aircraft, pilots the RV-1 earlier this year in Florida. Photo by Robert A. Terry
The "original" airplane Dick VanGrunsven designed and designated the RV-1 will arrive in style on AirVenture opening day, Monday, July 23-specially designated as A Salute to Van's Day. The airplane, originally a Stits Playboy, was modified by Van more than 40 years ago with a new cantilever wing, canopy, cowling, and other mods. Friends of the RV-1, Inc., a 501(c)(3) Public Charity, is donating the RV-1 to EAA for display in the EAA AirVenture Museum.
The airplane has made its way around the United States on a tour that began at Sun 'n Fun in April. It flew up the East Coast, over the border to and across Canada, and back down across the West Coast before making its way to Oshkosh. The official opening day arrival is scheduled for 2:45 p.m. at Phillips 66 Plaza right before the air show. (Time subject to change due to weather.)
The RV-1 will lead a parade of all RV models produced by the company over the years, with a special flyby tribute from the RV formation group Falcon Flight. EAA President/CEO Rod Hightower will be on hand to accept the keys to the historic aircraft and host a brief ceremony dedicating the airplane as it makes its permanent home in the cradle of homebuilt aviation, Oshkosh.
Among the special activities planned for the week:
- Van has a special appearance scheduled at 10 a.m. Tuesday at Theater in the Woods.
- The Team RV formation group will perform throughout the week.
- The RV-1 will be the featured airplane in the Aircraft Spruce & Specialty Homebuilders Hangar on Tuesday morning.