By Al Comello
Sedona Airport’s 2013 Family Fun Day to Display World War II Aircraft, Charles Lindbergh-era Artifacts and a USO-Style Musical Review.
Sedona AZ (August 31, 2013) – Arizona’s “Airport in the Sky” will host a their “Family Fun Day”on September 21 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and the admission is FREE! A host of interesting and historic aircraft – from old military, antiques and restored aircraft to new, modern, state of the art airplanes with full glass cockpits will be on display along with a hundred classic automobiles in the Sedona Car Club’s annual car show.
World War II Aircraft
This year the Sedona-Oak Creek Airport Authority, the managers of the airport have invited a variety of significant World War II aircraft to visit Sedona for the day. For example a historic, WWII B-25 Mitchell bomber, a four engine B-24 “Privateer” bomber and other WWII aircraft are expected. The event will emphasis the period of the 30’s and WW II with period music playing into the air and an USO Show with “Andrew Sister” performers on a stage set up at the event.
The B-25 Mitchell, “Executive Sweet” visited Sedona this spring an offered nostalgic riders the opportunity be one of six crew members for a “flight back in time” experience on a 30 minute B-25 flight. They flew six times which was an adventure of a lifetime for 36 people. They will be offering this opportunity to experience history first hand again at this year’s airport event on September 21. Interested individuals can sign up in advance by contacting the ride coordinator at the American Aeronautical Foundation at 805-377-2106. Flights will be offered on Friday afternoon (the 20th) and all day on the 21st. American Aeronautical Foundation is a non-profit preservation group from California owns the aircraft. All funds raised are used to preserver the aircraft. Their website is www.AAFGroup.org.
Spirit of Saint Louis Exhibition
A special display of artifacts from the designing and building of the Spirit of St. Louis aircraft, the plane Charles Lindbergh flew into history in 1927 will be in the main terminal. It is being displayed by a group headed up by Nova Hall, the grandson of the Donald Hall who actually was the designer of the aircraft. It is called “Flying Over Time – the Spirit of St. Louis Exhibition.” Donald Hall lived in Sedona in the 90’s. A trunk containing the original blueprints and hundreds of photos not known to exist of the building and testing of the aircraft was discovered by Nova Hall in 1999 in Sedona. The trunk and its contents are on display at this exhibition along with aviation themed art by Nova Hall. Mr. Hall will be selling and signing his book, “Flying Over Time” which recaps the story of the truck, its contents, and 1920’s history revealed by it’s discovery.
Kermit Weeks to Visit Sedona
Kermit Weeks, a famous aviator who owns the largest private collection of aircraft at his “Fantasy of Flight” air museum in Florida will be on hand to talk about the significance of this historic discover in Sedona. He will also be signing his renowned children’s aviation book called “The Spirit of Lindy” The book emphasizes the importance of “going beyond ourselves,” said the author. “Everyone can relate to the metaphor of reaching for the sky and the stars. Within us all, we soar in our imaginations and fly in our dreams.” Weeks, who is a former world aerobatics champion, an avid aircraft designer and a collector of more than 160 rare and vintage aircraft.
Lots to See and Do
The Sedona Modelers, a group of avid aviation enthusiasts who fly model aircraft on weekends from their mini-airfield outside of Sedona will be sharing their love of flying their planes. Some of their radio-controlled aircraft have wingspans in excess of six feet. Solar viewing telescopes will also be set up to safely view solar activity adjacent to the modelers.
Also on hand are emergency helicopter personnel who will explain their operational systems and procedures. Sedona Airport’s fire department will also be present with their modern equipment, motivated and skilled fire fighters.
Also, enjoy the Sedona Car Club’s annual classic car show with over one hundred really cool neat cars from around the state all competing for prizes and awards and your vote for “best”.
The USO Kid Officer’s Club
This year the airport has joined forces with Camp Soaring Eagle and the Sedona YMCA to host a kid activity center located in a tent on the Airport tarmac. In keeping with the WWII theme, that tent will be called the USO Kid Officers Club featuring fun games, crafts, and more. Hosts and emcees will be Tom & Shondra who will be joined with stilt walkers, face painters, and balloon animal makers will add to the festive spirit. This year, the Kids Officer’s Club will emphasis the world of children before TV and electronic games – what kids did for fun decades ago. Old time photos with the kids dressed in period clothes will be available for a donation.
USO Show at Noon – Free to Everyone
At noon, the USO Kid’s Officer’s Club Stage will come alive with a very special 30 minute USO musical review with featured performances by singer Tom Jepperson of the popular duo Tom & Shondra and Sedona Dynamite Divas – Jeanie Carroll, Shondra Jepperson and Susannah Martin. Songs will transport everyone back in time from the 1920’s through the 1940’s which will include the Divas singing several Andrew Sisters tunes such as Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy of Company B. Whether you remember these songs from way back when or are new to them, this special show will be fun for everyone! The stage faces the outdoors so hundreds of fun-day visitors will be able to enjoy the show.
Cadets from the local chapter of Civil Air Patrol will host the American flag raising at 10 a.m. while Tom Jepperson sings the national anthem. A fly-by of a aircraft including the historic B-25 Mitchell bomber and a squadron of aircraft is planned at the same time.
Tasty festival food like kettle corn, Zaney’s yogurt, hot dogs and burgers, BarBQ sandwiches, and snow cones will satisfy all who love community festival gatherings.
There is no fee for parking or entrance. The entire event is funded by a grant from the Sedona Oak Creek Airport Authority, which manages the airport and funds supplied by Philips 66, the fuel supplier for the airport.
The 2013 Sedona Winefest will be the following weekend, Sept 28 and 29 at Sedona Airport vista, not the same weekend of this airport family event. Learn more about the Winefest at www.sedonawinefest.com.
The website for Sedona Airport’s Family Fun Day on September 21 is: sedonaairport.org/events.