OSHKOSH, WI -- The color, excitement, and history of aviation is heading toward Oshkosh in 2009, as just three months remain until the start of the 57th annual EAA AirVenture fly-in convention, coming July 27-Aug. 2 at Wittman Regional Airport.
The entire spectrum of flight will be represented, from the new WhiteKnightTwo Mothership "Eve," the latest step in space tourism, to the mammoth Airbus A380, the world's biggest passenger jetliner. Extraordinary aviators will be in Oshkosh, ranging from the pilots of US Airways Flight 1549 to those who built a replica 1909 Wright 'B' Flyer. Outstanding entertainment is also part of the week's action.
EAA AirVenture annually draws participants from more than 70 nations and in excess of 10,000 airplanes, including more than 2,500 showplanes. The event includes 800 exhibitors with the latest aviation innovations; nearly 1,000 forums, workshops and seminars covering every aspect of the world of flight; daily afternoon air shows featuring the world's finest aerobatic performers; up-close and personal sessions with top aviation personalities; and the gathering of aviation enthusiasts from around the globe coming home to "aviation's family reunion."
"There are dozens of reasons for any aviation enthusiast to be excited about EAA AirVenture 2009," says Tom Poberezny, EAA president and AirVenture chairman. "People often ask me, 'What is the best day to come to AirVenture?' While the answer might depend on your personal aviation preferences, one constant this year is this: Every day, there is something truly extraordinary happening at 'The World's Greatest Aviation Celebration' that is part of something you can see no place else in the world."
Among the highlights already confirmed for AirVenture 2009:
- Space tourism's pioneering flights get a step closer as the WhiteKnightTwo space mothership "Eve" makes it public debut when it lands at Oshkosh on July 27;
- The mammoth Airbus A380, the world's largest passenger jetliner, makes its first general public air show appearance in North America;
- One of most gripping aviation events of recent years will be retold when the cockpit crew of US Airways Flight 1549 discuss their safe emergency landing in the Hudson River in January;
- Commemoration of aviation anniversaries from 100 years of Canadian flight and 80 years of homebuilt Pietenpols, to 60 years of the T-28 trainer and 50 years for the iconic Cessna 150;
- Recognition of aviation humanitarian achievements in the "Fly 4 Life" program and welcoming back Oshkosh Concorde Alumni in a special AirVenture reunion;
- The Doobie Brothers rockin' the runway on Monday evening, July 27, presented by Ford Motor Company; plus comedian Jeff Dunham on Aug. 1, presented by RotorWay International;
- More than 2,500 "showplanes" from vintage models to ultralights, including nearly 1,000 homebuilt aircraft built and flown by their owners;
- The newest innovations in aviation, with 700+ exhibitors offering everything to fulfill an aviation enthusiast's dreams, and plenty of new aircraft and avionics unveilings.
- A whole new look to the AirVenture grounds, with upgraded visitor amenities throughout the flight line and camping areas.
Each year more than 30,000 people annually camp adjacent to the flight line, either next to their airplanes or driving in to spacious Camp Scholler, fully experiencing everything that EAA AirVenture has to offer. Many aviators also are welcomed during their journeys by airport businesses that support EAA AirVenture through aviation fuel discounts and other amenities, available by searching www.airventure.org. Instant updates are also available here.
"For more than 50 years, the airplanes bring us together, but the spirit of the people keep us coming back," says Poberezny. "Pilots know that Oshkosh is a highlight for any aviator, which is why many make the trip every year. EAA AirVenture is a unforgettable week filled with excitement and unmatched experiences."