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Event Report
Event Reports - Sun 'N Fun 2004

Thursday, April 15
Sun 'N Fun 2004
Created: 04/15/2004
Updated: 05/10/2004
Link(s): N/A
 
Article by Mike Whaley
 
Thursday dawned clear but cold. Wednesday's 60mph gusts were replaced with gentle 10mph breezes and a ton of aircraft activity. It was truly a busy day!

Many old friends came by to visit us, as did a great number of attendees. The airshow included Randy Harris of Bearfeat Aerobatics flying his Super Skybolt, as well as many other great performers flying a variety of aircraft - from Steve Coan's Windex 1200C Motorglider to Mary Dilda in a T-6 to numerous monoplane and biplane acts. A lot of airplanes that couldn't make it in before due to weather did finally arrive, and it looks like there will be even more coming in tomorrow.

One of the best moments was when Caro Bayley, owner of the third Pitts Special, stopped in. She knew Curtis when he was 27 years old! Paul called Curtis on his cellphone and asked him to head back to the tent to meet someone. When he arrived, they both got that special look that people get when they see a good friend they haven't seen in a long time. Caro's a really neat lady with many interesting stories!


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Curtis and Chris Struthers discuss some features of the Model 14.  
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Thursday was another very busy day.  
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Randy Harris' 300-hp Skybolt awaits its turn in the afternoon airshow.  
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Randy preflights while waiting his spot in the program.  
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Caro Bayley, who owned the third Pitts Special, visited us. What a fascinating lady!  
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Paul called Curtis and told him he should vector over to our tent to see someone (we didn't say who)... it was a most pleasant surprise for him!  
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Two life-long friends catch up on the latest... this is what SNF is really all about.  
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The legendary Jim Clevenger is a big guy and also a big Skybolt fan. He owns the original Pitts Pellet monoplane pylon racer. Here his cap dusts the underside of the yellowbird wing. He's Budd Davisson's sidekick at Bearhawk Aircraft.  
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Famed X-Plane test pilot Scott Crossfield enjoys the airshow. You'll see many well-known aviation legends at sun N Fun.  
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Here is one of the first fighters in the Pacific theater of WW2 (Dick Foote's Wildcat, foreground) along with the ultimate Pacific fighters - two Corsairs. Beautiful airplanes, all.  
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This view really shows why the Corsair is nicknamed "The Bent-Wing Bird". The architecture allowed ground clearance for the huge prop disk.  
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Our friends at Jim Kimball Enterprises recently completed this beautiful M14P-powered monocoupe the "McCullocoupe". It's very fast, and the workmanship is superb!  
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Warbirds and acro. Can it get much better than this?  
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This nice Pitts S1-D belongs to Mike Williams.  
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This is the cockpit of a Fokker Dr.I Triplane replica. Great workmanship!  
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Old and new: A 1918-era aircraft with a 2004-era video system.  
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The view of Baron von Richthofen... pity the 75 or so Allied airmen in the sights!  
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Lovely B-25, a pampered lady reflecting her past.  
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Just the facts, ma'am...  
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The real meaning of PIC...  
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This "Son of Storch" attracted a lot of attention.  
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This is probably the most complicated gear setup you'll ever see (short of a 747)  
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It doesn't get simpler than this.  
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Humor is evident on Al Wise's Pietenpol. It's a past Sun N Fun Grand Champion.  
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Old time nav-lights.  
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This is an original Great Lakes.  
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This beautiful Mustang is polished to perfection.  
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Obviously, this Stearman owner enjoys going vertical!  
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The Rotec 7-cylinder radial is an exciting option for light aircraft.  
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Our friends at at Liberty Aerospace have their newly-certificated XL2 on display. The Liberty XL2 is the first piston-powered aircraft to be certified with a true Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC) system.  
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Grace Ellen shows off the just-finished Corvair demonstrator. This Zenith Zodiac was finished by the Fly Corvair crew in just a few months.  
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Yes, that really is a flying bass boat. EAA'ers are very innovative.  
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Seawind actually offers a pop-up camper for the cockpit!  
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This Yak had an interesting color scheme.  
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This unusual Yak 52TW is being extensively modifieed for engine and airframe research purposes.  
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This Decathlon put on a great show with some smooth, graceful acro.  
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The cockpit of the Laird Super Solution replica. Forward visibility... None.  
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The P-63 is a rare sight. Many were supplied to Russia via Lend-Lease, and ferried through Alaska to Siberia.  
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It's never too early to get kids interested in aviation. This little girl was fascinated, as was her pet lamb.  
 

Other entries in this series:
     Anticipation...    April 8, 2004
     Tuesday, April 13    April 13, 2004
     Wednesday, April 14    April 14, 2004
      » Thursday, April 15    April 15, 2004
     Friday, April 16    April 16, 2004
     Saturday, April 17    April 17, 2004
     Sunday, April 18    April 18, 2004
     Monday, April 19    April 19, 2004

If you have any additions or corrections to this item, please let us know.

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