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'American Barnstormers' Tour Roars Into EAA AirVenture 2006 With the Best of Early Aviation

 

EAA AVIATION CENTER, OSHKOSH, Wis. - (March 1, 2006) — The dazzling aircraft and the dashing men and women representing the era dubbed "The Golden Age of Aviation" will be in Oshkosh this summer, as the American Barnstormers Tour makes a triumphant conclusion to their nine-city schedule at EAA AirVenture 2006, the "World's Greatest Aviation Celebration." The 54th annual fly-in convention of the Experimental Aircraft Association will be held at Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh on July 24-30.

The American Barnstormers Tour brings together as many as 20 aircraft from the 1920s, '30s and '40s in a unique collection of airplanes and aviators. The meticulously restored and maintained aircraft will be featured in a special display in AirVenture's Vintage Aircraft area and flown in showcase flights during their stay in Oshkosh.

"EAA AirVenture, of course, is the most popular gathering place in the world for vintage aircraft each year," said Tom Poberezny, EAA president and AirVenture chairman. "This American Barnstormers Tour, however, is something that stands out even amidst the unmatched quality of airplanes that appear on the Oshkosh flight line every summer. The colorful personalities on the tour match the fabulous airplanes that will bring the famed Barnstorming Era to life on the EAA grounds."

The tour, which begins in Kalamazoo, Mich., in mid-July, features the pilots and crews in period clothing as the re-create the period between the World Wars, when aviation captured the world's imagination. Between 1920 and 1940, aviation records were national news, while air races and aviation rallies drew thousands of people to their local airfields.

"Flying these vintage aircraft into AirVenture is the perfect ending for the tour," said Clay Adams, organizer of the American Barnstormers Tour. "It gives people from all over the world the chance to travel back in time and experience the same sights, sounds, and excitement they would have felt some 80 years ago as they looked out across the fields and saw the Barnstormers on the horizon."

The American Barnstormers Tour was born under the wing of an antique Travel Air biplane, as a group of friends and vintage airplane aficionados began to talk of resurrecting the barnstorming tours of the 1920s, where many local citizens would see their first airplane up close, or perhaps spend a few dollars for their first flight. The magic of those times and aircraft continues to be a draw today at places such as EAA AirVenture or other aviation gatherings. Tour organizers saw an opportunity to give visitors from all backgrounds a unique vantage point to connect the past with the present.

At EAA AirVenture, there will be several informal "mini-forums" in the American Barnstormers display area, giving visitors a chance to discover more about the pilots and flying machines that made this tour possible.

"Less than a century ago aviation was still emerging, and the potential was unlimited for the designers, dreamers and pilots who were drawn to the sky," Poberezny said. "At EAA AirVenture 2006, people can again enjoy the airplanes that provided the excitement to that era and talk to the personalities who have their own flying stories to share.

"It's another reason that to enjoy the entire world of flight, there is no place to compare to EAA AirVenture Oshkosh. You're just got to be there!"

EAA AIRVENTURE OSHKOSH is The World's Greatest Aviation Celebration and EAA's yearly membership convention. EAA members receive lowest prices on admission rates. For more information on EAA and its programs, call 1-800-JOIN-EAA (1-800-564-6322) or visit www.eaa.org. EAA AirVenture information is also available through the World Wide Web at www.airventure.org.

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