by Stacy W.
Published in Midwest Flyer – October/November 2020 issue
I may not remember my first time at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, Oshkosh, Wisconsin, as I was too young, but I do remember prepping for the biggest event of the year. Our family would get up early and head to the show… my dad was always busy working the show – interviewing the crowd, performers and speaking with vendors.
We met many new people, made many new friends, and had many exciting adventures while at the show. No day, no show, no year was ever the same. The event is always bringing in new acts, new activities, new vendors, and for those people returning, EAA is always reinventing itself, so things are never the same.
If you haven’t experienced the actual airshow from different spots on the grounds, you should. I mean, “wow,” talk about a whole new perspective! I challenge you at the next show to pick a new spot and see the show from a whole new angle. From feeling the heat from the pyros on the showline, to feeling the jets coming up from behind you, no heart-pounding feeling is ever the same.
Yet in recent years, I look back at my memories of EAA and really nothing has changed in regards to meeting new people, working the show and preparing for the biggest event of the year. However, one thing has changed and that is me… as I age like a fine wine. I now bring my family to the show, and they get to experience the “ooohs” and “aaahs” of some of the same thrilling airshow performers that I loved as a kid – Julie Clark and Sean Tucker, to name two of the best! I now get to re-experience “KidVenture” and the many activities at the Ford Pavilion in the eyes of my son. I feel fortunate to be able to experience the same youth activities as I did as a child with my family, and experience new activities.
One thing I don’t remember as a child, and which has improved over the years, is the night show and fireworks. I mean “holy cow!” I love fireworks and that show has to be the best choreographed airshow of the year! Kudos to AirVenture and its team for raising my expectations so high that they cannot be met by any other fireworks display I have ever seen.
In closing, it is sad given the pandemic that AirVenture had to be cancelled for this year, among many other activities and events. Our lives have changed, but the anticipation for next year is even that much greater! I look forward to seeing you all in Oshkosh for EAA AirVenture 2021 where we will experience the greatest show on earth!