Cars, motorcycle and airplane enthusiasts united at the Red Deer Airport Sunday at the second annual Props and Pistons Show and Shine event.
Airplanes and vehicles were on display as well as businesses residing at the airport including flying schools, fire suppression, general aviation and civil air search and rescue.
The event raises money for the Red Deer Food Bank and gives people the opportunity to get up close and personal with airplanes as well as tenants that call the local airport home, said Nicole Holinaty, director of communications and marketing at the Red Deer Airport.
She said the hope for the event in its second year was to bring more people in and raise more money and food donations.
“Last year was our test year, and we didn’t know what to expect. This year we expect to double the attendance,” she explained.
The event raised more than $4,000 and about 2,300 pounds of food last year.
On display was a Canadian Air Forces hawk jet that flew in from Moose Jaw.
“It’s our big show attraction this year… we’ve had lot of training and noise advisories gone out in the community (in the last few weeks),” she explained. This had made people in the community curious to learn more about the hawk jet.
Among those showing off their vehicles was Red Deer’s Don Albers, who had been working on a hot rod for the past 14 years.
The Red Deer man said he builds cars as a hobby and does it “one piece at a time.” Sunday was the first time the hot rod – a 1935 Ford bobber-style pick up truck was on display. It’s had two test drives in the past.
“It’s quite something when you build your own vehicle and you put on all the pieces together and that first time you drive it. It’s a little anxiety producing because you wonder ‘is it going to break down? Am I going to die?’ But when it all comes together and you get to drive it, it’s quite the feeling of accomplishment,” said Albers.
It started when the 57 year old bought the cab for about $500 and somebody gave him the frame for free. What makes the vehicle unique is it’s a Ford body with a Ford motor (a 351 Cleveland) – which doesn’t happen often, he said.
Although, a friend helped the Red Deer man with the motor, he worked on the interior and the body himself. Whenever, he got stuck, he asked help from his brother in law, Cor Radder, from Airdrie.The Airdrie man also had a car on display at the show and shine event – a 1932 PlyMouth PB model – which he made in three and half years.
Growing up on a farm, in north of Ponoka, Albers grew up learning how to weld and fix things, and his interest in building cars grew as a teenager.
He said fixing cars helps him meet with people and share that common interest and build connections.
Holinaty echoed his words. She pointed out the event offers people an opportunity to connect with like-minded people and sparks interest in the aviation industry among young people.
“It’s a fantastic way to promote kids to get into aviation as well as promote businesses that are here, and not just to become a pilot, but say, an aviation mechanic,” she explained, adding the flight schools at the event help people explore those career options.