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Oshkosh AirVentures

EAA Airventure 2015
I volunteered to the Board that I would look into finding colocation for at least the Vintage Skywagons for 2015. In 2014 we were scattered to the winds, exacerbated by the very large number of attendees. It is clear that this is fraught with risk. If you tell them you have 50 aircraft coming then something close to 50 aircraft had better show up, otherwise it's a big problem. In 2007 and 2009 when I was last there before this year, we had 10 or 12 aircraft show up. It behooves us to send out an email early, somewhere in the middle to confirm, and then late to double check, and we would do that if we can get colocation dispensation from EAA Vintage.
I did speak recently with John Barron. He has been doing this for the Cessna 195 guys. They have a somewhat different history and it is interesting to understand. So, below, is my conversation with John.
1. I phoned John. He gave me a brief history, which is it took 6 or 7 years to put it in place, he cautioned not to be optimistic about getting it done quickly, could take several years, and he mentioned something very interesting, he has agreed with EAA that the 195 guys handle some of their own safety concerns. It was a short conversation, he was mounting a D-18 rudder and had to go.
2. John followed up with an email:
We were given parking in the area there by the Theater in the Woods but were thrown out with no warning because we were not antique, that first year after being put in that area for years, we were scattered to the four winds, we made a fuss. The Vintage group found us the spot we now have, and have supported us, had we not been Vintage, there would have been little hope for us, as I was getting nowhere.  We are trouble free, not the case with the Swift group who were difficult to deal with, and only now are they getting some preference some 8 years later.  The 170 guys have had no luck, I think because they could potentially show up with 100 or more planes. Realize if a large number of types all had their own parking, and what that would do to the parking staff, trying to get all these different planes up and down the taxiways, along with another 8,000 arrivals in 3 days. I am telling you this because I don't want you unhappy with the EAA. There is only so much they can do in the time, volunteers and logistics they have allotted. The Cubs got preferential parking for their anniversary, but only that year, again, because they are such a large group I think.  Being a smaller group helped I think, having crowd appeal helps, along with our own safety and parking helpers, who knows for sure what trips the trigger?   John Barron
3. Great info from John, and I appreciate that he typed all that into his iPad! His cautions on logistics/time are important, we need to proceed with care I would think.  I followed up his with an email of my own: "Great info John, appreciated. For us, this would only be those of our aircraft which qualify as vintage, that's for sure. I completely understand your comment on EAA, I get the parking aspect. I'll check in with Geoff R. and see what they say. They did this for us in vintage in 2007 and 2009, and therefore most likely in 2008, so we might have a chance ...  Take care, thanks for your time. "
And finally here is John's final email. Some good thoughts here too!
4. I would love to see a line of vintage 120s thru 195s all in a row, but getting this would prove very difficult, even if we had permission.  It could be done, if all were intermixed, and the group would have to be built from the center, north and south, and filling up the leftover space once Monday afternoon came along.  The problem is guessing how many will show up.   An attempt to sort out each type might be handled to some degree, but moving airplanes becomes a liability problem !  The various clubs would have to be involved!    JB