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Wind Down on the Water

Visit the EAA Seaplane Base for a change of pace — and aircraft

By Katie Holliday-Greenley

July 28, 2017 - The EAA AirVenture Oshkosh grounds are always teeming with excitement, people, and the sounds and smells of aviation. But just a few miles away, another side of Oshkosh can be found at the EAA Seaplane Base.

Nestled on the shore of Lake Winnebago, the EAA Seaplane Base has long been an oasis for AirVenture attendees looking to escape the heat or the crowds, or who are just looking for a change of pace from the main convention site.

Seaplane Base Chairman Mark Wrasse said this year’s attendance is slightly down from last year when the Martin Mars was moored on the lake, but even without the giant water bomber, roughly 1,000 people visit the Seaplane Base daily.

In addition to those who ride in on the bus from the main AirVenture grounds, Mark said 73 airplanes flew in to the Seaplane Base, including about a half-dozen Piper Cubs, here celebrating the type’s 80th anniversary, a de Havilland Beaver, and two Grumman aircraft: a Goose and a Mallard.

“There aren’t a lot flying, so we like having them here,” Mark said of having a Goose on the water.

In addition to the aircraft parked at the Seaplane Base, the Kitty Hawk Flyer prototype will be flying demonstrations on Saturday, 9-10 a.m. and 4-5 p.m. The Kitty Hawk Flyer is an electric-powered, multicopter personal aircraft designed to fly over water.

The EAA Seaplane Base is a great place to wind down your AirVenture experience with its annual Watermelon Social this evening, which starts at 5 p.m. Mark said there will be a meal of pulled pork sandwiches in addition to plenty of watermelon.

Buses to the Seaplane Base depart from the bus terminal just outside the Main Gate and from the bus stop near amphibian parking. Round-trip tickets are $3 per person. 

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