MIDLAND, TEXAS (July 27, 2010) – On Tues., July 27, 2010 at a special press conference held at EAA AirVenture 2010, the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) unveiled plans for an extraordinary teaming of two American treasures, the CAF’s Red, White & Loud Tour starring Aaron Tippin and the B-29 FIFI.
The world’s only flight-worthy Boeing B-29 Superfortress FIFI, and country music star/patriot Aaron Tippin will launch the CAF’s Red, White & Loud Tour celebrating America’s freedom through song and the roaring radial engines of one of the world’s most famous warbirds.
At each tour stop, the CAF’s B-29 FIFI will arrive with Aaron Tippin aboard. Once qualified, Aaron will begin co-piloting the heavy bomber to future stops. Audiences of the CAF’s Red, White & Loud Tour will have the once-in-a-lifetime chance to see Aaron perform such songs as Where the Stars and Stripes and the Eagle Fly in front of the world’s only flying B-29, FIFI!
The CAF’s B-29 FIFI will be available for guided tours and the public will also have an opportunity to purchase a ride in the Boeing B-29 Superfortress for the first time in history! Rides can be purchased in advance by visiting www.cafb29b24.org.
In addition, the CAF has announced the first stop on this unique tour will be in Denver, Colo. at the Colorado Sport International Air Show, Aug. 28 and 29, 2010, at Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport.
“This is the first of several stops in 2010-2011 for the CAF’s Red, White & Loud Tour starring Aaron Tippin and the B-29 FIFI,” said CAF President and CEO Stephan Brown. “Aaron is a great supporter of our American troops and veterans, as well as the Commemorative Air Force and what we stand for, Honoring American Military Aviation through flight, exhibition and remembrance.”
"Denver is honored to host the return of the CAF B-29 FIFI to the skies with the CAF’s Red, White & Loud Tour starring Aaron Tippin & the B-29 FIFI.” Said Jim Cimiluca, President of Colorado Sport Aviation, Inc. “We're planning a truly special celebration for both the aviation community and the general public to be a part of this historic event."
The Colorado Sport International Air Show is excited to be the first stop for not only the CAF’s Red, White & Loud Tour, but also for the CAF’s B-29 FIFI since the completion of its extensive re-engine project. In 2006, the B-29 was grounded by the CAF due to recurring engine trouble and after four grueling years of work by volunteer-members, FIFI will return to the skies with a new lease on life. She has been refitted with new custom built engines that are a combination of the R-3350-95W and R-3350-26WD engines. The re-engine project and subsequent return to flight is due in large part to the generosity of Jim Cavanaugh, founder of the Cavanaugh Flight Museum in Addison, Texas.
“The Commemorative Air Force is unique, we aren’t like other museums,” said CAF President Stephan Brown. “We start our engines, we fly our airplanes and we get loud, taking history to the public, not waiting for them to come to us. The Red, White and Loud Tour is an exciting opportunity for the CAF to continue doing what we do best, educating and reminding Americans of the cost of our freedom.”
About Aaron Tippin:
A highly experienced airman himself, Aaron soloed on his 16th birthday. He became a commercial multi-engine instrument-rated pilot by the age of 18 and is also helicopter-qualified. A certified aircraft and power plant mechanic, he owns a 1941 Stearman, a 1946 J3 Cub and 1959 Helio Curior -- all in flying condition.
Over the past two decades, platinum recording artist Aaron Tippin has become one of the most recognizable and influential voices in country music. With 13 recorded CD’s to his name and more than 30 charted singles, he performs nearly 200 dates each year. For more, visit www.aarontippin.com.
About the CAF’s B-29 Superfortress:
When the Commemorative Air Force (then Confederate Air Force) began searching for a B-29 for its collection of historical military aircraft, World War II had been over for 21 years. The Superfortresses that helped end it had long since yielded to new generations of jet-powered strategic bombers and vanished. According to the United States Air Force, no B-29s remained in inventory, even at storage or disposal depots. But the CAF colonels had faith and it paid off.
In 1971, a pilot reported sighting a number of what might have been B-29s in the California desert near China Lake. The CAF learned the aircraft were indeed Superfortresses that had been parked at a Navy weapons center for 17 years. They had been used for gunnery targets and abused by heat, sand and vandals. After much negotiation, paperwork and a painstaking process of elimination to find the best survivor, the CAF added B-29 SN44-62070 to its fleet. That was just the beginning of the task. The complete restoration to CAF standards of airworthiness was a long and expensive project involving more than three years of fund-raising and hard work. Late in 1974, the CAF's B-29 was christened FIFI and joined the other World War II fighters and bombers to preserve the memories and teach lessons of mankind's greatest war. For more information visit www.cafb29b24.org.
About Colorado Sport Aviation, Inc.:
Colorado Sport Aviation, Inc. is an all-volunteer 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation whose mission is to Inspire the Pilots of Tomorrow. The organization serves and promotes recreational aviation by hosting an annual regional air show and fly-in. The air show and fly-in has a 30-year history of bringing the fun and fascination of general aviation to the Colorado Front Range. Recreational aviation encompasses: fun, families, building, restoring, flying, exploring and learning. CSA's mission places an emphasis on providing at-risk and gifted and talented children access to general aviation opportunities through education, introductory flight experience (EAA’s Young Eagles Program), hands-on construction/technology seminars and Flight Training Scholarships. Individuals, organizations, vendors and sponsors interested in becoming involved with CSA, the air show and fly-in are encouraged to visit their web site at www.COSportAviation.org. Additional information on the 2010 air show and fly-in will be posted as it becomes available.
About the CAF:
Collecting, restoring and flying vintage historical aircraft for more than half a century, the Commemorative Air Force (CAF) ranks as one of the largest private air forces in the world. The CAF is dedicated to Honoring American Military Aviation through flight, exhibition and remembrance. A non-profit educational association, the CAF has more than 8,000 members and a fleet of 156 airplanes distributed throughout the country to 74 units located in 27 states for care and operation. For more information, visit www.commenorativeairforce.org or call (432) 563-1000.