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EAA AirVenture off to strong startEAA AirVenture off to strong start

Attendance and exhibitors up from 2015Attendance and exhibitors up from 2015

With nearly 5,000 volunteers working months in advance to make it happen, EAA AirVenture opened to clear blue skies on July 25 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. EAA Chairman and CEO Jack Pelton said there were a record number of exhibitors and pre-sale attendance was also up from last year.
EAA AirVenture 2016. Photo by Jim Moore.
EAA AirVenture 2016. Photo by Jim Moore.

Pelton’s opening day remarks struck a positive tone for general aviation. “It shows that GA is possibly on the rebound,” he said. The show welcomed 860 exhibitors, and aircraft camping had filled up and had to be closed at one point on Monday, something Pelton said he doesn’t remember seeing.

The show has a number of anniversary themes this year, including the 100th anniversary of Boeing, the 100th anniversary of Coast Guard aviation, and the twenty-fifth anniversary of Desert Storm. But at this early point in the week, the only thing anyone could talk about was the Martin Mars, which made a graceful landing in shallow Lake Winnebago July 23. Pelton said they had to sink a 10,000-pound concrete slab for the Mars to be moored to.

Highlights still to come are the ceremonial flight of the two millionth Young Eagle, who will be flown by Harrison Ford. And later in the week the Canadian Snowbirds will perform.

Ian J. Twombly

Ian J. Twombly

"Flight Training" Editor
AOPA Pilot and Flight Training Editor Ian J. Twombly joined AOPA in 2003 and is an instrument flight instructor.
Topics: EAA AirVenture, Fly in, Experimental Aircraft Association

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