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Thread: To the EAA - it's OK if you have to cancel AirVenture 2020

  1. #41
    FlyinAdamBadger's Avatar
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    On April 24, 2020, WKOW 27 provided an update on EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2020.

    Dick Knapinski, Director of Communications for EAA, says the "World's Largest Aviation Celebration" is still scheduled for July 20 to July 26 on the EAA Grounds in Oshkosh.

    Knapinski says they are working with federal, state, and local health officials to assess the COVID-19 situation.

    "We want to make sure it's a safe event and the health and safety of all of our guests, our exhibitors, and our volunteers are our top priority," said Knapinski. "So we'll see what the situation is by the middle of May and make the appropriate decision at that point."

    Video & Article Here: https://wkow.com/2020/04/24/eaa-to-m...20-by-mid-may/

  2. #42
    Given that a large proportion of devoted attendees are over 60 years old, holding Airventure 2020 would certainly mean loss of life. To not cancel AV 2020, to me, would be irresponsible, no matter what "changes" they could make to try to make it safer. With all of the reopenings underway now, there will be a rebound, just compounding the problem for the summer. EAA: Make the safe decision. We will all breathe a sigh of relief.

  3. #43
    Airmutt's Avatar
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    Much has been made about Georgia reopening but not much is said about the conditions imposed. Such as...restaurants are limited to 25% capacity, hair salon personnel must wear PPE and patrons wait in their cars to be called in. Stores have limited occupancy and one way isles, etc.

    So, I think the real interest is just what conditions will be imposed on EAA and AV. Once we see that I think folks can make up their own minds and prepare accordingly.
    Dave Shaw
    EAA 67180 Lifetime
    Learn to Build, Build to Fly, Fly for Fun

  4. #44
    I'm 70 and I have absolutely no fear of Covid-19. I started social distancing soon after they opened the first WalMart. If I wanted to "live safe" I'd never get in a car or on an airplane. If you fear that AirVenture 2020 would be a cesspool of viral infection then stay home. Let your fear rule your life, not mine.

  5. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronald Franck View Post
    I'm 70 and I have absolutely no fear of Covid-19. I started social distancing soon after they opened the first WalMart. If I wanted to "live safe" I'd never get in a car or on an airplane. If you fear that AirVenture 2020 would be a cesspool of viral infection then stay home. Let your fear rule your life, not mine.
    All valid points of course - But neither you nor I will be the ones needing liability insurance for the event. All the individual vendors, exhibitors, dealers, food service staffs etc.etc.etc. not to mention EAA itself WILL be "on the hook" for potential negligence lawsuits two weeks after AirVenture closes. I'm thinking the TV commercials for "Dewey, Cheatem and Howe" almost write themselves ...... "Did you attend Oshkosh? Feeling ill? Need a check? Call our claim professionals today. We're here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to serve YOU."
    "Don't believe everything you see or read on the internet" - Abraham Lincoln

  6. #46
    robert l's Avatar
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    I agree with you Ronald, I'm 73, my wife is 58 and is a nurse at the epicenter hospital where it started in S.C. We are cautious, but not afraid, we don't wear mask when we go out unless the place we go requires it. She only wears one at work when necessary, which isn't often. I believe, and that's just my opinion, that the death toll numbers have been intentionally skewed to show more than what is actually correct. The regular flu season has thousands of death every year but no one panics because it's the, "norm", but the media is treating Covid 19 like the plague. We take our temperature regularly, wash our hands and distance ourselfs from other people, family included, we visit some, but the hugs and hand shaking is absent. I'm cool with that, although I come from a family of huggers. With that being said, I also agree with Randy, there are a lot of people, (not the true aviation people) that will want to blame EAA even if they get a splinter and are just looking for someone with deep pockets. I for one, am willing to sign a waver if that's what it comes down to. I just don't believe it's as bad as it's made out to be. There again, that's just me and y'all can crucify me if you feel the need, I won't be offended. If A/V 2020 happends, I'm going to be there.
    Bob

  7. #47

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    Yes, we are in our 70s and I think it would be irresponsible for EAA to keep Airventure 2020 on, and force us to make that kind of decision about whether to go or not. If they decide to go ahead, I fear that many folks, particularly like us, will catch the virus and some won't make it. Why would Jack and the Board take that kind of chance? Is a life not worth waiting until we are through this? Do what Arlington did - just say "2021" tickets and arrangements all still good. Lives saved.

  8. #48
    rwanttaja's Avatar
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    The liability issue, I think, will be the key one. EAA's second-best protection (the first is, of course, NOT holding the event at all) would be to show that the precautions they took were similar to those taken by other large public events.

    Right now, all summer's public events in the State of Washington have been canceled, and that's similar to other states. However, the outbreak in Wisconsin has (so far) been minor.

    A bit of research shows that a major Wisconsin music festival (Summerfest, "The World's Largest Music Festival") that usually runs at the end of June has been postponed until September. The Wisconsin State Fair is just after Oshkosh; their web page says the decision has not yet been made. If the state fair eventually cancels, this will put EAA out on a limb if they decide to hold the event.

    Activities like major league baseball and NASCAR are planning to re-start...but WITHOUT public attendance. If the Brewers aren't allowing fans into its games, and especially if the games are being held in Arizona rather than at home, this is, again, going to make EAA look like they're taking unwarranted risks. Places that are allowing restaurants and bars to re-open are requiring they reduce the allowed number of customers to help maintain distancing.

    EAA may well have to limit attendance...which won't sit well, when you consider that most of the attendees come hundreds, if not thousands of miles to attend. If the forums require six-foot spacing for distancing, that reduces the attendees by about 2/3rds. How is EAA going to handle the overflow of angry people denied entry to a given forum? Similar limitations would hold for concerts and Theater in the Woods events. And how do you enforce social distancing during the airshow? On the trams? Riding the buses, or waiting in line for entry?

    EAA's liability will depend not only on the rules they implement, but their ability/willingness to ENFORCE those rules. There will be a lot of volunteers deciding not to attend this year; EAA may not know the actual numbers for a couple months. Yet they have to ensure that adequate enforcement will be available. Their only way to be sure is to contract for private security...which is NOT going to go over well with the attendees.

    Then we get to the vendors. Most of aviation is hurting right now. How many are going to be willing to shell out the usual thousands of dollars to rent exhibit space, ship displays and equipment, and hire booth staffs with the prospect that attendance is going to be significantly lower? Same holds for sponsors. Boeing, for example, is really hurting and is laying off 15% of its work force. How interested are they in supporting Oshkosh this year?

    Food vendors: More sanitary rules, of course, but how do they estimate how much food to order? A "normal" year is easy enough, but there's no way to tell how many people are going to show up. ALL business are hurting...the food vendors won't want to over-order. Which means, more than likely, there will be shortages on the grounds. Off-site restaurants may be required to limit seating as well.

    A lot of problems, that EAA is going to have to solve. And, again, there's a severe dearth of crystal balls in the world. We don't know if COVID-19 will be a bad memory by the end of July....will just be hitting its second wind. This is going to be a tough call for EAA. It's unlikely they can hold a "traditional" event.

    Ron Wanttaja

  9. #49
    Airmutt's Avatar
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    Yeah Ron, just the social distancing requirement requires a complete rethink of AV. I can imagine pulling into parking: “Welcome to AirVenture! Due to limited seating you are number 2354 for the shuttle bus; we should be able to get you to the grounds in about a day and a half.”
    Dave Shaw
    EAA 67180 Lifetime
    Learn to Build, Build to Fly, Fly for Fun

  10. #50

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    Ron, do you have a source for this comment: "Right now, all summer's public events in the State of Washington have been canceled, and that's similar to other states. However, the outbreak in Wisconsin has (so far) been minor".

    We are not yet sure if our RC club can hold a Fun -Fly event this summer. (mid June or later)

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