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Bits and Pieces

Preparing for AirVenture 2011

By Jack Dueck, Editor – Bits and Pieces, EAA 337912, EAA Canadian Council

For Connor & Jeff Seaborn, flying to Oshkosh is a family affair.
EPlanning for Oshkosh at Chapter 1410.

Planning for AirVenture 2011 started soon after last year’s Sploshkosh. Visitors to AirVenture last year will remember the incredible effort by staff, volunteers, and visitors to make the best of an impossibly wet ground condition where aircraft and motor homes had to be disbursed wherever dry enough ground or parking spaces could be located. Returning home in our motorhome, Jean and I debriefed our week of excitement.

AirVenture 2010 was the first year that Canadians at Oshkosh had their own identity established with a small kiosk in the Members Welcome Tent. Throughout the week, Canadian visitors stopped by to talk to EAA Canadian Council members and share thoughts and ideas. 

It was, in all, perhaps a meager effort, but it was a start that will continue to develop, allowing Canadian EAA members the opportunity and benefit of a separate EAA Oshkosh identity similar to that of homebuilders, ultralights, vintage, etc. After all, EAA Canada is the fastest growing segment of any, with more than 10 percent membership growth in the last year.

Another first effort in 2010 was our ice cream social, a notable success where all available space was filled. Many individual members expressed encouragement.

As we debriefed we summarized last year’s advent as a small but successful, difficult but rewarding experience. And now onto this year!

First and above all else, a wish and prayer for good weather!

For the past month or so, preparations have been ongoing. Our chapter meetings have had ongoing discussions on who is going, who needs a ride, and who has space in an aircraft or in a vehicle. 

Bob Kelley, an Oshkosh volunteer in the Workshops area, will be driving down in his motor home with his faithful companion, a yellow lab named Katie. Rob is leaving on July 19 and taking his time with a scheduled stop on July 21 at Doolittle’s Bar and Grill in Alexandria, Minnesota. Jean and I meet Bob there every year for a great rendezvous and dinner. Bob has two artificial knees and is renting a golf cart for mobility around the Scholler campsite.

We expect to arrive sometime on Friday, July 22, after picking up a rental car in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. We’ll settle down in Camp Scholler and be ready for action on Saturday, checking in our volunteers, setting up any last minute items, and, of course, meeting our many friends made over the last 29 trips to Oshkosh.

Monday morning, our EAA Canadian Council will be holding and interactive forum at 10 a.m., Forum Pavilion 01 Pacific Coast. Canadian EAA members will have the opportunity to discuss Canadian issues and to learn what EAA can do for us.

During the week, volunteers will man an informal information desk in Member’s Welcome Tent. Stop by and say hello. Tell us where you live, your EAA chapter or which chapter is near to you, and ask us any question you may have concerning your EAA membership.

Our ice cream social is scheduled for Friday, early evening. Make sure you mark your calendar.

Our new CPLAN insurance brokers will be on the grounds to offer you a quote on your insurance needs, a first-time opportunity for you to review or assess your insurance needs and costs on site.

And finally, and most importantly, meet old friends, make new friends, and became part of this large wonderful Oshkosh family. You will rekindle your friendship each and every year at this same time and at this same and only place: Oshkosh.


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