Home       Aeronca    Stinson                                                                                                               ... by John Baker

Memorial Day Fly-In - 2011

Celebrating Grass Roots Flying

Added 5/30/11, Updated 5/31/11.  Click on images for a larger view.


Memorial Day, May 30, 2011.  A special day at VA99 as I found myself with a backyard full of Cubs and Champs.  Frank Isbell, a Champ owner from the Richmond, Virginia area, flew in with some of his many friends.  Frank had tried this several times, but today everything worked and we had a great little impromptu fly-in at VA-99.  The gaggle flew in from a lunch rendezvous at Coles Point.  It was a delight to see the loose formation of nine taildraggers arrive together.  There were six Cubs, two Champs, and one Aventura II amphibious experimental.   What fun!

The sky over Ophelia was abuzz with the sound of airplanes arriving.  Frank kept me posted via text messages of his planned arrival time.  His last message was, "Leaving Sanford in 15 minutes - 3 Cubs, 2 Champs, a J-5 and a boat."  When the gaggle arrived it had grown to nine with two extra Cubs.  "I picked up some along the way," he said when he landed.

Landing to the south, all nine came in over the trees.  They did a great job of landing on the unfamiliar airstrip. 


A Cub, a Piper J5 and a Champ.


A Champ, and a Cub.

"And the boat...."  His friends with the Cubs and Champs tease him a little, but Matt Tucciarone is very happy with his colorful Aventura II amphibian.  When he left he was making arrangements to meet someone at a nearby beach.

Frank Isbell led the gaggle with his pretty 1946 7AC Champ.  The paint scheme is borrowed from the Aeronca Sedan.

Chuck Tippett  from Warrenton, Virginia owns this 1948 7AC Champ, finished as an L-16 in military regalia.

My wife Sukey took this photo looking out the back door.  With my back yard filling up, we parked two Cubs and "the boat" across the runway in Mike and Dee Roe's front yard.

It was a great day for looking at airplanes.

There's nothing like a Cub.  This 1947 J3-C belongs to Larry and Ruth Setti of Remington, Virginia.

Not all Cubs were made by Piper.  The Cub in the foreground is an American Legend Cub - a modern replica.  A Continental O-200 provides power and offers the luxury of a full electrical system and starter.  It is owned by Charles Davis of Fredericksburg, Virginia.

NC30508 is a 1940 Piper J5A owned by Dave Hinckle.

Got color? Matt's Aventura II was the last plane to arrive. I overheard one of the pilots say that Matt made the best landing.  This one has a feature none of the other planes has - a bilge pump.

The view from my hangar - boy, do I love this!

With temperatures on the ground hovering around 95 degrees, pilots and passengers enjoyed the shade of the hangar and a drink of cold water.

The Cubs back-taxi out for departure.  Winds were calm and the trees to the north seemed shorter.

They're stacked up for departure at Ophelia International!

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