IMAA Big Bird Fly-In; June 27-29, 2014

The Friday before the Big Bird was laced with high tension as we had NO Runway! In fact, we had been flying off of crushed asphalt for two risky months. If paving was going to happen in time for our event it would have to happen the actual day before flying was to commence. Our spirits started soaring when the drive to the field on Friday revealed what seemed to be a good sign...

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As you see here, flying off of crushed asphalt can be done but it is really dicey... especially if you are proud of your plane and do not want it to get banged up. The machine pictured is the paving apparatus that was the most beautiful thing we saw besides the rainbow! Knife River did the paving honors and the Rogue-Eagles owe them a debt of gratitude. The workers went above and beyond the call of duty to get the job done.

John Gaines had brought his Super Sportster for Jay Strickland to use to fly the first flight off the new runway. This was to be sort of a 'Thank-You' for the incredible amount of work that Jay did to allow the club to have this new runway. Alas, the Karma demons caused paving to stretch into early evening and Jay had to leave, so John did the honors with a beautiful flight (and landing!).

  • Saturday dawned bright and beautiful (and 600 feet long!) and the flyers took to the skies with gusto. Here is Rob Fralick with a gorgeous bird that he flies with abandon.

  • Larry Maerz had spent the previous day watching the asphalt being applied and could be seen flexing his thumbs in anticipation. He finally got his chance to put up a nice Fly Baby that he acquired from Robert McClain's collection.

  • Dave Bartholomew brought his EFlite Quique Somenzini Carbon Z Cub that was equipped with monster batteries. He can fly this at night with all of those lights on it. Dave has offered to give it away to anyone who can say "EFlite Quique Somenzini Carbon Z Cub” fast 3 times (not really)

  • This gorgeous Der Jaeger biplane was built by Martin Sherman and Tom Dunnington 25 years ago. It is powered by an old Super-Tiger 2500 that Martin converted to gasoline. Recently refurbished with a new radio and paint job, it is being flown by Larry Myers.

  • Probably the biggest big bird at the fly-in was Larry Myers' big Yak.

  • Alan Littlewood brought his sturdy DynaFlite Chipmunk complete with working flaps.

  • Thanks must go to Larry Myers for surmounting runway woes in order to put on the first event we have been able to hold in two full months. Thanks, Larry.

  • Dale McCuistion and his Stearman.

  • Standing (L-R):
  • Dale McCuiston
  • Chuck Ammerman
  • Alan Littlewood
  • Rob Merriman
  • Calvin Emigh
  • Mike Bullock
  • Taylor Dent
  • Dave Bartholomew
  • Harvey Gilmore
  • Larry Maerz
  • Rich Hume
  • Allen Maerz
  • Myrah Maerz (child)
  • Ray Wasson Jr.
  • Ray Wasson
  • Bill Inman
  • Kneeling (L-R):
  • Bruce Tharpe
  • Howie Simmons
  • Corey Myers
  • Larry Myers
  • Larry Cogdell
  • Rob Fralick

Bruce Tharpe's Super Flyin' King not only makes a nice picture, it even makes shade while flying. That thing is HUGE!

The entire gang wishes to thank the Jackson County and Knife River Paving for going the extra mile.

Thanks to Pat Dunlap for sharing these splendid photos!

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    Mr. Larry Myers, Pilot Extraordinaire