Air Affair a salute to aviation history

Aviation history — from its graceful, wooden past to its supersonic, after-burning present — will be saluted at the Red Deer Regional Airport June 13.

Aviation history — from its graceful, wooden past to its supersonic, after-burning present — will be saluted at the Red Deer Regional Airport June 13.

Air Affair will feature dozens of vintage airplanes and an appearance by a Canadian Armed Forces CF-18 in all its ear-splitting glory during the all-day celebration tied in to a 100th anniversary of powered flight in Canada.

Organized by the Harvard Historical Aviation Society, Air Affair features a full day of activities at the Springbrook airport for those willing to let their spirits slip the surly bonds of earth.

Visitors can climb into a biplane for a taste of flying from the days of barnstorming or hop into a basket and rise above the airport in a tethered balloon.

Historical society president Jodi Smith said the buzz has already begun.

“People are really high on the hot air balloon rides and the open-cockpit biplane rides,” she said.

Balloon rides begin at 7 a.m. and cost $10 per person. Biplane rides cost $120 per two-person load.

There will be plenty of history on display with a classic car and antique airplane show and shine that begins at 8 a.m. and is free of charge.

Red Deer Cruiser Club and the Foothills Car Club will take over three-quarters of the airport parking lot to showcase their gleaming examples of road royalty. “I think they have room for about 80 cars and they’re figuring they will fill,” Smith said.

More than 200 historic aircraft owners from across Canada have been invited to showcase their winged wonders, and if the weather co-operates there could be 40 to 50 vintage planes touch down at the airport near Penhold.

Smith said the event ties into the Back to Baddeck coast-to-coast relay organized by the Canadian Aeronautical Preservation Association to mark a century of powered, heavier-than-air, controlled flight in Canada. It all began with J.A.D. McCurdy in the Silver Dart on the frozen surface of the Bras d’Or Lakes near Baddeck, Nova Scotia.

The relay using vintage planes provided by participating museums began in Nova Scotia in March and crosses and re-crosses the country in stages until it returns to the Nova Scotia International Air Show in Yarmouth in September. The Penhold leg will see a restored Harvard trainer make the trip from the Red Deer Regional Airport to Wetaskiwin.

If weather allows, a CF-18 will swoop in at 9 a.m. The jet fighter is making an appearance as part of 24 Red Deer Royal Air Cadet Squadron’s annual parade and inspection, which is set for noon.

The historical society is also planning to hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 1:30 p.m. on the site of the future $5 million aviation museum planned for the airport. Red Deer County has already donated land for the museum, which will house vintage planes and other exhibits.

Smith said the society also plans to host a special tribute to the 65th anniversary of Andrew Mynarski’s heroic effort to save a friend in a burning bomber during the Second World War. Mynarski was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross for his bravery.

Those who come early can start with a pancake breakfast that begins at 7:30 a.m. The cost is $7 for adults and $4 for children six and over.

For information go to

Just Posted

Fenced-off SCS site development approved by Red Deer city council for seven years

‘Sunset clause’ means a new permit will be needed in 2025

Growing drug-fuelled emergencies at Red Deer’s Buffalo transitional housing complex

City council approves two additional mental health staffers at complex

Bystanders help Innisfail Mountie make arrest

A 35-year-old Ottawa man is facing a number of charges including resisting arrest

More supports for homeless needed for Red Deer

Provincial funding recently announced for Lethbridge

Second Central Alberta born jaguar dies

Mia’s brother Magnum dead at Discovery Wildlife Park

Orlando SC acquires Canadian Tesho Akindele in trade with FC Dallas for cash

ORLANDO, Fla. — Canadian forward Tesho Akindele was traded to Orlando City… Continue reading

Koskinen notches third shutout, McDavid gets winner as Oilers blank Flames 1-0

EDMONTON — The Edmonton Oilers appear to have shored up their defence… Continue reading

Beyonce performs at pre-wedding party in India

Beyonce brought her star power to a pre-wedding party for the daughter… Continue reading

Kirk Douglas celebrates 102nd birthday

LOS ANGELES — Actor Kirk Douglas got to celebrate his 102nd birthday… Continue reading

Ellen Page steps up attack on Nova Scotia pulp mill’s effluent pipeline

HALIFAX — Hollywood actor Ellen Page is doubling down on her criticism… Continue reading

Pence aide out of running to be Trump’s next chief of staff

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s top pick to replace chief of staff… Continue reading

Swath of South faces wintry mess: Snow, sleet, freezing rain

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A massive storm brought snow, sleet, and freezing rain… Continue reading

‘I killed my best friend’: Opioids’ fatal grip on mayor, pal

MOUNT CARBON, Pa. — Janel Firestone found her son — the 24-year-old,… Continue reading

Most Read