The New England Air Museum in Windsor Locks, CT, is pleased to celebrate Governor Dannel Malloy’s proclamation designating September 2012 to be ‘Aviation Appreciation Month’ in the State of Connecticut.
The Governor’s proclamation declares that “This month is an opportunity for aircraft owners, pilots, aviation enthusiasts, and others to share an appreciation for the freedom of flight, the camaraderie of the aviation community, as well as the past and future of aviation in Connecticut.”
“Aviation is woven into the fabric of Connecticut’s DNA” declared New England Air Museum board president Scott Ashton, “and the New England Air Museum salutes Connecticut’s leadership in creating our nation’s aviation’s future. Connecticut has always played a substantial role in all facets of aviation, including military, commercial, space, and business aviation, and for the past century, Connecticut’s aviation industry has contributed to the quality of life and economic freedoms we enjoy today.”
“Our region has made major contributions to the development of aviation and aerospace technologies, from Sikorsky and Kaman helicopters, Pratt & Whitney engines, Hamilton Sundstrand propellers and space life support systems, to the hundreds of other manufacturers and businesses in the ‘aerospace alley’ of our region. Here at the New England Air Museum, we have a variety of exhibits that reflect just how this area is not only revolutionary, but also visionary,” added Mike Speciale, Museum Executive Director.
Of note, the New England Air Museum showcases over 80 aircraft and related artifacts, and has the largest and most significant collection of aircraft built by Igor Sikorsky, including his WWI aircraft, the only remaining original VS-44 flying boat, and Sikorsky’s first production helicopter, the R-4. Pratt & Whitney’s contributions to aviation, which include key piston engines and landmark jet engines, are also well-represented at the Museum. New exhibits are planned to highlight the pioneering work of inventors at Sikorsky, Pratt & Whitney, Hamilton Sundstrand, Kaman, and many other manufacturers from the state. The New England Air Museum is also home to an F-4U Corsair, designated as the official airplane of the State of Connecticut.
While generally classified as a history museum, education is a top priority for the New England Air Museum. Open daily, the Museum boasts a team of educators including staff and volunteer docents who bring a wealth of experiences not only in aviation and aerospace, but also in engineering, education, all branches of the military, and technology.
“Our staff and docents are our true treasures,” says Susan Orred, the Museum’s director of development and marketing. “We have knowledgeable, enthusiastic experts to meet our visitors and provide them an interactive and informative museum experience. What does a pilot of a jet see in the cockpit? Hop in and let us show you. Interested in how an engine works? Step right over here. How do wing shapes affect flight? Let’s build a model and find out.”
The New England Air Museum has events planned throughout the month of September to recognize Aviation Appreciation Month. Located nearby Bradley International Airport, the New England Air Museum has been entertaining and educating visitors for over 50 years. Adds Speciale, “There really is a universal appeal to the New England Air Museum, because what’s more exciting than flight? We are a place that is truly intergenerational where children, parents and grandparents can each find something inspiring and have something to experience together.”