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Thread: Oshkosh Traditions?

  1. #1
    s10sakota's Avatar
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    Oshkosh Traditions?

    There's so much negativity here about the EAA's current direction, that I need some positivity because I still get PUMPED when I think about Oshkosh approaching!

    We have lost track exactly, but this year (we think) will be the 15th year in a row that my dad and I travel to Oshkosh together and camp out for a week. This is usually the only vacation that I take throughout the year. In fact, as a pilot, I try to bid my schedule to have the last week of July off every year. If I can't bid it off, I save my sick time so I can call off! I go to Oshkosh no matter what!

    I've flown to Oshkosh in 2004 and 2005 when I had my RANS S-10 Sakota, but every year but those two my dad and I have driven in. I live in MI and my dad lives in PA, so he drives to MI the day before we plan to leave. As silly as this sounds, just loading the car the day before with our camping gear is fun becaues the anticipation of the week ahead is so great. We depart my house at 6:00 am so we can arrive at Oshkosh early in the afternoon.

    We have milestones on our way to Oshkosh. Leaving Michigan, getting through Chicago, entering WI ("wow we're almost there!"). Then there's the drive North on 41 and seeing other cars and RV's headed the same direction with airplane stickers on the windows. Yep, they're going to Oshkosh too! We've even seen airplanes on trailers being pulled to Oshkosh.

    Once we arrive we meet up with a couple of other friends from Michigan that always fly their Kitfox's in. We camp together and usually get together throughout the day for the airshow and then dinner at Vicky's (by the ultralight area).

    I'm just another one in the group of people waiting at the doors for the "big" hangars to open on Monday morning. Since I am usually the one with the car, it's tradition for us to take one day and go to town and get the buffet at Pizza Hut. How that started I have no idea, but it's what we do and it's part of what we look forward to each year.

    This year I have a new RANS S-6S that my dad and I will be flying to Oshkosh. With no car, our tradition may change a little this year, but I do know that no matter how commercial it has become, no matter how many times I have to move off the road so a golf cart can pass, my dad and I are going to have a great time. We are already excited and already planning the flight in the airplane.

    This year will be the start of new traditions for us since the days of driving to Oshkosh are past. We're flying now!

    Sure my traditions don't mean anything to anybody else, but it's what makes Oshkosh so awesome for us.

    What are your traditions for Oshkosh??
    Mark

    2003 RANS S-10
    2011 RANS S-6S
    2025 Vans RV-7
    1962 Piper Cherokee 160

    www.aircraftstickers.com Very cool aircraft stickers. Vans, RANS, Kitfox...more!

  2. #2
    hydroguy2's Avatar
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    Last year was my first OshKosh, 2012 will be my second year. Tradition?, I don't know about that, but I know I will have a great time. I flew in last year and stayed with a good friend in a air conditioned motorhome(Camp Scholler). That was a deluxe way to spend 8days of heat, humidity and occasional rain. This year I want to experience camping in a tent on the field.

    Holy Crap, 24 days to go....see ya there.
    It's just one dam job after another

    Brian C.
    Sport Air Racing League http://www.sportairrace.org/
    Race 155

  3. #3

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    Similar to s10sakota. Dad and I have been flying up together for about 10 years. Planning starts during the cold winter days in January, and then by July we've gotten sidetracked with other projects and it is a mad dash to get everything packed and the tent sprayed down with rain repellant, etc. Every year includes at least one movie at the fly-in theater, a trip to Friar Tucks, and multiple days of walking through the planes row by row. Another tradition is to say that we will actually make it out to the sea plane base for the first time ever, and never doing it. This is the year we are going to break that tradition (although I just completed half of it!).

  4. #4
    AeroPilot's Avatar
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    I became a pilot 4 years ago,.. and finally I am going to make it to OSH. Not by plane this year, but it doesn't matter, I am excited as a kid in a penny candy store and a dollar to spend! I've got my list of packing stuff, already have extra batteries and items for the camera, need to break in my new sneakers as my second pair for the week, and soon I"ll be on my way! Making the trip from Southeast PA will take 2 days, but I'm excited to arrive and camp in Scholler.

  5. #5

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    This will be my fourth year at Oshkosh and my first with my private pilot certificate. Each year has been special. There's nothing like AirVenture just to soak up the aviation atmosphere. Between the awesome aircraft, the commercial exhibits, and the wonderful people, it's my aviation high point of the year.

    My traditions: hanging out by the ultralight field, walking the rows of aircraft dreaming about which ones it would be great to fly in, visiting the Warbirds and catching a faint glimpse of history, having a ice cream cone that melts faster than I can eat it, walking through all the booths seeing what great ideas people are coming up with, finding great books to read, neat tools to puzzle out.

    Memorable events:
    My dad, uncle and father-in-law joined me my first year and I got to hear new aviation stories (Dad: civil service flightline at Patrick AFB near KSC, Uncle: flying Cessnas back in the 60's, father-in-law: Navy P3 pilot in 70's).
    Seeing the A340, DC3's, Rutan's creations and the aerobatic aircraft.
    Hearing aviation personalities like Burt Rutan, Harrison Ford, Jim Lovell, Gene Cernan, Lane Wallace, Richard Branson, Rod Machado, and others.
    Just talking to folks while eating (I know....I'm the annoying guy who asks, "Where are you from? You a pilot? Did you fly in? What are some cool things you've seen?" You'd think for a 55 year old introvert I wouldn't act like a giddy 16-year old. )

    But that last point brings up the strength of AirVenture...lots of friendly people who want to talk about flying. Sure, there are some grumpy folks who are bound to wander in accidentally, or are just hot and tired, but most everyone I've talked to is friendly and enthusiastic. Who know, maybe I'll even get to meet some of the folks here. I think we all agree there's no better place to be than at Wittman Field in the middle of the summer.

  6. #6

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    It wouldn't be Airventure without at least one meal at Ardy and Ed's. If you aren't familiar, google it, you'll be glad you did or just go to: www.ardyandeds.com/
    --
    Bob Leffler
    RV-10 Flying
    www.mykitlog.com/rleffler

  7. #7
    MEdwards's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rleffler View Post
    It wouldn't be Airventure without at least one meal at Ardy and Ed's. If you aren't familiar, google it, you'll be glad you did or just go to: www.ardyandeds.com/
    Any suggestions on how to get there if you don't have a car? Thanks.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by MEdwards View Post
    Any suggestions on how to get there if you don't have a car? Thanks.

    Find someone with a car. I'll arrive July 20 with the 5th wheel, and be there all week. The rest of the family "gets in" from Saturday on. OSH turns into a family reunion for us, except for my sister. We sort of all straggle in from OK. 917 mile drive. My dad, brohter, twin brother, & I are all PPs.

    I pulled the trailer out onto the driveway last week. The kids & wife have already started loading it up. Deciding where & how things need to go.

    My dad is 82 mom is 80. They camp in a rented travel trailer from the rental co. from Greenbay, next to me in the 5th wheel. We've been staying at Sleepy Hollow (#69) for the past 10 years.

    My daughters (17 & 22) seem more excited to "go to Oshkosh" every year. They absolutely love to walk up & down, up & down, the rows upon rows of airplanes, lots of times looking at all the cool "stuff". Then, they find me, and say "hey come look at this" or that, or whatever. This will be the 3rd year for the 17 yo's boyfriend to go with us. He's a great boy, I really enjoy having him with us. He's been checking the schedules for stuff since last year, so he can tell me what's happening, and what we need to do at OSH. I'm buying a Rans S19 kit this year & he's pumped, he can't wait. Great kid.

    Dang, I'm getting excited now just writing this.

  9. #9
    steveinindy's Avatar
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    Any suggestions on how to get there if you don't have a car? Thanks.
    Taking the train or a commercial flight to Chicago and then a bus ride to Oshkosh would be my suggestion if you can't hitch a ride with someone. Last I checked, Greyhound still runs service up that way.
    Unfortunately in science what you believe is irrelevant.

    "I'm an old-fashioned Southern Gentleman. Which means I can be a cast-iron son-of-a-***** when I want to be."- Robert A. Heinlein.



  10. #10
    MEdwards's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steveinindy View Post
    Taking the train or a commercial flight to Chicago and then a bus ride to Oshkosh would be my suggestion if you can't hitch a ride with someone. Last I checked, Greyhound still runs service up that way.
    Thanks, Steve. Actually, I meant how would you get to Ardy & Ed's, given that you're already at the show. It's over on the east side. Looks like a two mile walk from the terminal, wouldn't be too bad. Maybe I'll try that this year, just for fun.

    Mike E

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