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EAA Warbirds of America Celebrate with Expanded Air and Ground Activities at AirVenture 2007

 

EAA AVIATION CENTER, OSHKOSH, Wis. - (March 29, 2007) — The unmistakable din created by the roaring engines of former military aircraft is one of the many unique sensory experiences that bring aviation devotees back to EAA AirVenture Oshkosh every summer. Visitors to this year's July 23-29 installment of the annual event, dubbed "The World's Greatest Aviation Celebration," are in for a special treat, as the EAA Warbirds of America will expand their activities in the air and on the ground.

According to Rick Siegfried, EAA Warbirds of America president, an impressive lineup of Warbirds attractions for AirVenture 2007 is already taking shape, with more confirmations coming. Siegfried has more in an EAA AvCast podcast at www.airventure.org, available starting April 4.

The current confirmed aircraft and personalities include:

  • Lone Star Flight Museum's B-25, B-17, and Hawker Hurricane;
  • The Commemorative Air Force's Curtiss SB2C Helldiver, the world's only flying example;
  • P-51 "Old Crow" with WWII veteran Col. Bud Anderson piloting;
  • The third-ranking fighter-pilot ace of all time, GŁnther Rall, and the T-6 that he flew after World War II;
  • Col. Bob "Shorty" Rankin and a P-47 that was part of the mission that shot down Rall;
  • an F4U Corsair;
  • a Flying Tigers P-40 and appearances by famed Flying Tigers ace Tex Hill; and
  • a Junkers JU-52.
Expanded activities will also include three popular Warbirds offerings: the Living History program, the Training Command program, and Warbirds in Review.

"The Living History program will offer visitors an even deeper history-immersion experience this year," Siegfried said. Owners and pilots of Warbirds aircraft and other volunteers will set up an Allied Forces mini-camp that will feature authentic World War II aircraft, equipment, uniforms, and weapons. In addition to fighter and bomber pilots, the camp will include support personnel, infantry, ground vehicles and weaponry, and even a mechanized tank unit. The Living History ground forces will also participate in the air show, simulating maneuvers with their vehicles along the flight line.

The Training Command program will honor the aircraft, individuals, and techniques dedicated to providing the training that prepared armed forces pilots for service. "This year, in addition to presenting an array of primary, basic, and advanced military training aircraft, the Training Command area will also honor the nation's civilian pilot training centers," Siegfried said, referring to those private-sector facilities that supplemented military training programs during wartime.

In observance of the 75th anniversary of Beech Aircraft Corporation, the Training Command will include an exhibit celebrating the role of Beech aircraft in military training from the company's beginnings through the present day. Additionally, the Training Command will conduct a daily mock air show flight briefing, a firsthand look at the intricate planning and orchestration required for a large and sophisticated air show.

Warbirds in Review, a popular AirVenture attraction for several years, will offer up-close-and-personal presentations from Warbirds aircraft owners and pilots, and from veterans relating their air-mission and -combat experiences. "Sadly, every year we lose more World War II veterans. Every opportunity to talk with and listen to these remarkable veterans is a privilege," Siegfried said.

EAA and its Warbirds Division will issue more information on featured daily Warbirds in Review attractions and personalities as the schedule in finalized.

The Warbirds of America also plans dazzling spectacles in the air. AirVenture's weeklong air show schedule includes several servings of Warbirds action, with expanded shows on Friday and Saturday, complete with pyrotechnics.

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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