Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Fantasy of Flight March E-news

Fantasy of Flight E-news


March 2010


Fun Facts of the 15th
A continuing series of reflections in celebration of Fantasy of Flight's 15th birthday

Deep Roots and a Bright Beacon:
Fantasy of Flight's Water Tower


Water Tower Photo 

A crane adds beacon to the water tower in 1995. 


Whether you arrive at Fantasy of Flight by land or air, during the day or night, you will find yourself steering in the direction of the magnificent 250,000 gallon, red and white checkerboard water tower, a prominent landmark soaring over the facility at more than 150' tall. Built in 1993-4 to a modified 1929 design, the tower is rooted in massive underground pads of concrete totaling 200 cubic yards. 

As with every element of Fantasy of Flight, the water tower had to conform to a design rationale that fit the vision of owner/creator Kermit Weeks. He says it best:
Not only does the Fantasy of Flight water tower give us the pressure and volume we need to meet the fire sprinkler codes, it serves as a great navigational beacon.  Its distinct period red and white checkerboard paint job is very easily seen during the day and, at night, the original WWII red and white rotating beacon distinctly stands out from the other local modern airport beacons which are green and white!



Living History Symposium Series Update
Special thanks to
WUSF Public Broadcasting for sponsoring these special events.
March: Celebrate Boundary Breaking WASP for Women's History Month

Daring Females Take Center Stage
in "A Passionate Pursuit"

WASP photo 
The WASP, Women Airforce Service Pilots, a spirited squadron of pilots, left their homes and families at the height of World War II to serve as the first American women to fly for the U.S. military. Fantasy of Flight's Living History Symposium Series continues to bring to life experiences of courageous aviators through exhibits, real aircraft, and most importantly, personal stories from WASP pilots who will be answering questions and interacting with guests. March 25 through 27.

New Event Announced!
A Living Legends Luncheon has been added to the events honoring WASP this month. Click here for more details and to make an online reservation for the intimate luncheon set for Friday, March 26
April: Celebrate American Fighter Aces of WW II

Triple Ace Bud Anderson to Appear in
"Victory in the Sky"


April's Living History revs up the powerful engine of the pursuit aircraft and the pilots who achieved extraordinary results, all in coordination with Fantasy of Flight's annual Mustangs & Mustangs.

Mustangs & Mustangs Graphic  

Headlining the panel of heroes for the "Victory in the Sky" symposium will be Col. Bud Anderson. Successfully completing 116 mission and achieving 16 ½ aerial victories in his trusty P-51 "Old Crow," Col. Anderson was lauded by fellow legend Chuck Yeagar as "the best fighter pilot I ever saw."

Col. Clarence E. "Bud" Anderson

Col. Clarence E. "Bud" Anderson

Anderson himself has expressed an enduring love for the P-51 Mustang. He praised it as "pleasant and forgiving to fly. Best of all, it went like Hell. The Merlin had great gobs of power and was equally at home high or low, thanks to a two-stage, two-speed supercharger. The Mustang carried fuel enough to pursue and destroy the enemy once you'd flown to the target, and it could turn on a dime. It was crucial to keep it in trim but, as we gained experience with the plane, that became automatic. We sensed it was special, even before we measured it against what the enemy pilots were flying."
Last Month: Legendary Tuskegee Airmen Inspired Record Audiences

Photo of Meet and Greet with Tuskegee Airmen
Lt. Col. Hiram Mann and Dr. Roscoe Brown sign autographs for Fantasy of Flight guests (Photo Credit: Don Keeton Photography)

Tears, laughs, and thunderous applause scored every appearance of the Tuskegee Airmen during the 3-day Living History event in mid-February.  Audiences hung onto every word that flowed from real American heroes, Dr. Roscoe Brown, Lt. Col. Hiram Mann, and Lt. Col. Leo Gray. Representing his father Lt. Col. Lee Archer was Roy Archer. Kermit took special pride in flying his red-tailed P-51C, painted in honor of Lt. Col. Archer's famous aircraft "INA The Macon Belle."

In This Issue

Living History Update

Blue Max on the Horizon

Splash-In: About to Make Waves

Boy Scout Camporee

New nightFlight Dates

Pass Holders Corner

April 3 Closure

Connect with Us



Blue Max on the Horizon
March 12 & 13

The Blue Max Graphic

Don't miss the premiere of an R/C event that is certain to become legendary. 
The two-day Blue Max event will feature an adjudicated Static Display and Fly-In Competition with awards for static display and aerial maneuvers. Aircraft is limited to those built between 1903 - 1919. Interested in participating in The Blue Max?
Click here to download the registration form.

Click here to watch a quick video of Kermit talking about The Blue Max produced by our event partners.

The Blue Max event is included for free with general admission for spectators.



If it looks like a Duck and flies like a Duck...
It must be time for the Splash-In!

Grumman Duck Splashing Across Lake Agnes

The 36th Annual Sun 'n Fun Fly-In, the annual event known as "Spring Break for Pilots," will be holding its Splash-in on Fantasy of Flight's glistening Lake Agnes. Visitors will witness a variety of seaplanes and amphibious aircraft perform water landings and takeoffs with the entire afternoon devoted to competitive flying.


Fantasy of Flight's own Grumman Duck is scheduled to be featured at the event set for April 15.



Last chance to register for 100th Anniversary of Scouting Camporee:
March 5-7

Boy Scouts

What's it all about? Fun, friendship, merit badges, camping, aircraft, a giant-scale R/C aircraft performance by the
Mid-Florida R/C Club, simulators... and so much more.


Click here before it's too late.



Extended, Again!

Due to its overwhelming popularity, additional
nightFlight paranormal investigations have been added to our schedule of events.

New nightFlight Dates:


Saturday, March 20 Saturday, April 3



Pass Holders Corner
Don't forget to enjoy a birthday lunch on us!

Compass Rose Photo


All Annual Pass holders receive a free lunch at the Compass Rose Diner on their birthday each year. This special offer is valid only on the Pass Holder's actual birthday and proof of the date of birth is required. 



Special Announcement:


Fantasy of Flight will be closed for a private event on Saturday, April 3, 2010.
The attraction will reopen to the public at 10 a.m. on Sunday, April 4, 2010.



Connect with Fantasy of Flight:


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Restored DH-4 Airframe Arrives
Add Liberty engine and (voila!) History is Set Aloft


DH-4 UnloadingOn February 17, Century Aviation delivered a beautifully restored military version of the de Havilland 4 (DH-4) airframe. 
The DH-4 holds a distinctive place in aviation history as America's first bomber and the only American-built aircraft of the U.S. Army Air Service in World War I.  Though it was a late entry to the war, the plane revolutionized military supply strategy with a simple idea: interchangeable parts.  Its post-war peace-time contribution is equally significant.


This mass produced bomber, with a few modifications, became the work horse of the U.S. Postal Service in deploying a brand new concept: air mail.



DH-4 side view from rearFantasy of Flight is thrilled to have two DH-4 airframes and is currently engaged in overhauling a total of five rare Liberty engines. Two will be brought back to an airworthy standard, one to military specifications and the other to early airmail specifications, that will set the DH-4 aircraft aloft!



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