Fun and education at Aviation Day

Several aircraft are on display during Aviation Day June 16 at Pangborn Memorial Airport. (Empire Press photo/Darlene Paterson)

 

See more photos of Pangborn Memorial Airport’s Aviation Day.

 

By Darlene Paterson
Empire Press Correspondent

Miss Veedol is on display during Aviation Day. (Empire Press photo/Darlene Paterson)

Pangborn Memorial Airport held its annual Aviation Day June 16 with an enthusiastic crowd of children and adults attending.

The event, based at the south end of the airport, featured a variety of aircraft displays, kids activities, helicopter rides, Miss Veedol, food, drawings, a photo booth and more.

Boy Scouts directed traffic in and out of the airport as hundreds of cars came and went throughout the day.

The Wenatchee Valley Museum and Cultural Center booth displays historical photos and other information for those attending Aviation Day. (Empire Press photo/Darlene Paterson)

After parking and entering the designated area, families with children were given Aviation Day passports. Each child had their passport stamped by the various vendors present which qualified them to be entered into a drawing for a drone.

Vendor booths and kids activities were located inside the first hangar exhibit area.

The Alaska Airlines booth provided free inflatable airplane hats, pens, lip balm and credit card holders. At a booth outside, anyone over the age of 18 could sign up for a chance to win a $300 gift certificate to fly with Alaska.

Employees from Numerica Credit Union handed out free bags. Numerica also sponsored a photo booth.

On the left side of the hangar, Wenatchee Valley Museum & Cultural Center’s exhibit celebrated the 1931 nonstop trans-Pacific flight of Clyde Pangborn and Hugh Herndon. The two pilots flew from Misawa, Japan, to East Wenatchee in their red-orange plane called Miss Veedol. Pictures and information about the historic flight were featured at the booth. The museum in downtown Wenatchee contains a larger exhibit and further information about the memorable flight.

The next booth displayed a replica of a 1929 Pietenpol Air Camper in its construction stage.

“Mr. Pietenpol designed his plane so people could build it in a garage,” Janet Brown said. “And that is exactly what our family is doing. My husband Bruce, our son, daughter and I have been working on this for three years. I used to park my car in the garage,” she laughed. “By next year, we hope to have the landing gear on. We are looking for wheels right now. They are pretty hard to come by when building something from the 20s.”

Ridgeline Aviation’s maintenance, repair and modification shop displayed the personal aircraft of owner Cass Monnin and a partially disassembled plane belonging to an employee.

“We wanted to do this because people usually don’t get to see inside the airplane’s structure,” he said. “People are crawling all over it, so it’s kind of cool.”

Ridgeline’s display included tools and equipment used in the trade. Monnin said he has been doing aircraft maintenance for 22 years and opened his shop at Pangborn a year ago.

Booths located on the other side of the hangar included a summer reading challenge from Tutor Doctor North Central Washington and Civil Air Patrol cadets. North Central Regional Library displayed books on aviation.

The North Central Washington Classical Flyers booth was a busy place filled with kids constructing flight projects from various building materials.

Miss Veedol herself sat at the entrance to the airfield, displayed for all to explore. Spirit of Wenatchee hats, shirts and bags were available for sale. Later, Miss Veedol took to the air so observers could watch her fly.

Out on the field, about a dozen local pilots displayed their aircraft. People were welcome to check them over and climb inside. Other interesting aircraft came from Chelan County Search and Rescue and FedEx Express.

In another hangar, Vanessa Dunn, visitor services manager from Honor Point Museum at Paine Field in Everett, provided information about the Historic Flight Foundation. Its DC3, once the VIP aircraft for Johnson & Johnson, was on display and available to book flights on.

At Honor Point Museum, a collection of aircraft produced between 1927 and 1957 are fully restored and ready to provide flights. For information about Honor Point Museum and its schedule of events and activities, visit historicflight.org.

Air ambulance services Life Flight Network and Airlift Northwest AirCare displayed their aircraft and representatives offered information about what they provide.

The Quake, classic rock radio 102.1, did a live broadcast and encouraged listeners to come out and enjoy the day of flight activities.

A hangar at the south end of the field housed Century Aviation, a manufacturer of exact reproduction aircraft and quality restorer of historic and classic aircraft.

Bob Cromwell from the National Park Service represented Pearson Air Museum in Vancouver. His booth in the Century Aviation hangar displayed flyers and booklets from the museum. Pearson provides stories of some of aviation’s earliest fliers, landmark aviation accomplishments and the history of the site’s World War I Spruce Mill. Cromwell was there to pick up a 1914 Curtiss JN-4 “Jenny” being restored for their museum by Century Aviation.

Noise and activity from helicopters and planes lifting off or landing kept things lively. An Alaska Airlines plane also flew in with passengers.

There was much to see and do at Aviation Day 2018 — a day to be remembered by all.