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
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
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
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!