Today’s “Hagerstown Flying Circus” Visit

I got to zip over to Hagerstown, Indiana in the S7 late this afternoon for the yearly gathering of antique & vintage aircraft. Yep, I know it’s strange having a flyin on a Tuesday, but this is the 4th year they met on the Tuesday before Oshkosh for a gathering loved by the locals and held at the small town, grass strip. Led by Andrew King, the pilot from the movie “Fly Boys,” vintage & antique aircraft descended on Hagerstown in preparation for the big fly-in to Oshkosh. “The Hagerstown Airport is great,” says King, “We loved it the past three years. It’s not often we get to see such a large airport that’s also a grassy airport. Old planes like grass because that’s what they were built for.” I have to say, I got a little concerned when it departed downwind to please the crowd that was gathered on the north end of the strip. Hagerstown has about 4,000 lovely feet of grass so a downwind departure in about 8 kts normally wouldn’t be a big deal in most aircraft but this reproduction with an O-360 Lycoming still struggled to get up and around (not over) the trees! It came back around for a slow speed flyby and then headed back to Dayton before sunset. So, I’m hanging out, minding my own business at Hagerstown and surprise, up comes this happy lady asking me, “Is your name Judy?!” Holy cow, turns out to be lady taildragger pilot, Juliet Lindrooth, from Pennsylvania who flew in solo for today and the rest of the trek to Oshkosh. Now it was getting very interesting! Juliet owns and flies a very special antique airplane, a 1932 Brunner Winkle Bird BK. Sadly, she wasn’t able to bring it on this trip but I was happy to see her in her Grumman Tiger. But not to despair, she WILL be flying a taildragger for the next 2 weeks courtesy of a friend – and it’s a Champ so she’ll have a wonderful time! OK, new and old tailwheel pilots beware, I learned tonight you can mow down some nice looking Indiana corn if you’re not prepared. This Luscombe made his approach and landing a little too close to the corn on the east side of the strip and somehow ended up doing a quick ground loop through the corn. No damage though – just a lot of corn stalks hanging from the tail feathers and down the runway. Juliet and I sure enjoyed finding ourselves at a grass strip in middle of Indiana tonight, surrounded by corn and bean fields! It was kind of a fluke that I even flew over there tonight but so happy I did. Sure was great meeting you, Juliet, and look forward to catching up with you at OSH! Don’t forget ladies, we’re meeting for lunch on Tuesday, July 26 at the Hilton Terrace Restaurant past the north 40 at 11:30 for lunch – join us lady pilots – tailwheel or nosewheel! It’s also lady taildraggers day in Vintage on Wednesday, July 27,  so be there to support your taildragger pilots at 11:00!! Judy  ...

Evelyn Greene     (Hawaii)

Evelyn Greene (Hawaii)

Evelyn Greene is based at Kalaeloa Airport (KJRF) on the island of Oahu. Aloha, I own and fly a Stearman PT-17 based out of Kalaeloa Airport on the island of Oahu.  I learn something new every time I fly this airplane. She is the Queen with her nose in the air – she knows everyone is looking at her!...

May 2011 WASP Homecoming

Sweetwater, Texas is home to the National WASP World War II Museum at Avenger Field and host for the May 2011 WASP Homecoming (Women Airforce Service Pilots).  Thanks to Marie Spear for sending these lovely pictures from an awesome event. Marie is based at (KENW) Kenosha Regional Airport, Kenosha, Wisconsin. My husband and I flew our Stearman to the WASP Homecoming from our home airport here in Kenosha, WI. It was an awesome experience!!!!!!! From the Reporter News; In the spirit of WASP, Peter and Marie Spear flew their restored 1941 Stearman — the same model that WASP flew — a thousand miles from Kenosha, Wis., to Sweetwater. “I would have been a WASP,” said Marie Spear, adding that she had never heard of the female aviators until her husband gave her a book, so she insisted they fly in for the homecoming. “They are inspiring,” she said. Peter Spear let one of the WASP get into his plane. “I said we better be careful getting them out of the plane,” he said. “They are a national treasure.”    ...

Julia Doerner     (Washington)

Julia Doerner (Washington)

Julia Doerner is based at (KRNT) Renton Municipal Airport, Renton, Washington. The first flight I took was in a 2 seater Pitts when I was 12. From then on I wanted to learn to fly. I did training with Damian Delgazio in New Jersey. My Mom did the advanced tailwheel training and I did primary in the L-4. Ever since I have wanted to own an L-4. Now I fly with my Mom every chance I get who owns a Cubcrafters S2. (see Diana Votaw). I have always found taildraggers to be far more fun the tricycle aircraft. I am a student at University of Washington getting my bachelors in Mechanical Engineering. * *...

Marie Spear     (Wisconsin)

Marie Spear (Wisconsin)

Marie Spear is based at (KENW) Kenosha Regional Airport, Kenosha, Wisconsin. (Photo update) I fell in love with flying while flying passenger with my husband in his Stearman. I got my ticket in 13 weeks flying a Cessna 172, because that’s all the instructor had. I found it pretty boring. In 2000 I purchased a beautiful 1946 Cessna 140 and learned to be a tailwheel pilot in it. After a few years in that, and after my husband was certain I wouldn’t break his ‘baby’,….I soloed the Stearman at the National Stearman Fly-In. A few months after we got married in 2006, we purchased a 1953 Cessna 180. It’s been a great airplane! December 2010, we sold my little 140. Marie Spear...

Sharon Johnson     (Texas)

Sharon Johnson (Texas)

Sharon Johnson is based at Tradewind Airport (KTDW) Amarillo, Texas. I just love vintage aircraft. They have so much personality. My personal airplane is a 1935 Fairchild C8C. My husband and I own and fly both a 1942 Stearman and a 1947 Republic Seabee. For a living we team fly a Citation 5. Our little vintage airplanes are much more fun. We live at Tradewind Airport where we have a hangar attached to our house.  We also have a hangar and part interest in a grass strip south of town, Blue Sky Airfield.  The Fairchild has won a few awards at airshows.  We are also in the process of rebuilding an Aeronca Champ.  We said it would be done in the spring, but wisely didn’t say which spring!...

Lorraine Morris    (Illinois)

Lorraine Morris (Illinois)

Lorraine Morris is based at Poplar Grove Airport (C77), Poplar Grove, Illinois. I started flying in 1980 and started flying taildraggers in 1987 when I met my husband.  He had a 1950 Cessna 140A that he had learned to fly in, so he taught me to fly again (in the 140A) after not flying for 5 years before I met him. We have kept the 140A and I think I will go before it goes as it has been in the family since 1968, but other taildraggers have come and gone, including a bunch of Cessna 140s, a 150 taildragger conversion, a Spartan Executive (Ken’s Mistress), a Commonwealth Skyranger, and a Culver Cadet. All of these we bought as some form of basket case and fixed up or restored to flying condition. We are working on another Cessna 150 tailwheel conversion right now as that is the plane I had a lot of fun with.  The early 150s with the straight tail and straight back are the best when converted using Cessna 140 gear. I fly the B-777 for United right now, and started an interior business about 15 years ago.  I sew and install complete interiors for people, preferably in old airplanes.  My husband Ken is an A&P and IA so between the two of us we do lots of complete restorations for ourselves and others. We got our DC-3 type ratings, and that also allows us to deliver all kinds of planes all over the US.  I have to say it is always a team effort! Thanks for the great website! Lorraine Morris...

Lisa Haag    (Texas)

Lisa Haag (Texas)

Lisa Haag is based at Covey Trails Airport (X09) Fulshear, Texas and flies a Stearman and Cessna 140. “I have my Commercial, Instrument, Multi, and Single Engine Land and a Commercial Single Engine Sea rating.” I got my taildragger sign-off 10 years ago in our Stearman N2S3, and I also have a Cessna 140. I have flow a little bit corporately, but mainly just fly for fun. I live at a grass runway airpark outside of Houston, and I love it. I also put on the ‘End of the Season’ Stearman fly-In in Jennings, LA, with the help of the city....

Julie Richardson    (Washington)

Julie Richardson (Washington)

Julie Richardson is based at Vancover, Washington (1W1) and flies a Stearman. Hmm.  Stearman. Commercial, instrument, used to be a CFII (let it lapse in 2001). None of that counts, though, since I’m just pleasure flying as a fair weather pilot these days. Airframe mechanic, retired air traffic controller. Live on a grass runway in Vancouver, Washington (about 8 minutes from Portland Oregon PDX). Restoring a Stearman and flying one that I borrow.  (I do lots of fabric work for its owner). I do aircraft fabric work out of my home hangar....

Jane Wicker    (Virginia)

Jane Wicker (Virginia)

Jane Wicker is based at Warrenton, Virginia and flies her newly restored, prized Stearman, “Aurora”. I have been flying since 1989.  I’m a commercial pilot with my multi-engine and instrument ratings, but my true love has been aerobatics and my tail draggers.  I used to fly competitions in a clipped wing Tayler Craft and a CAP-21.  Then I transitioned to the Stearman.  I am also a professional wing walker (since 1990).  I recently bought a freshly restored 450 HP Stearman that I’ve named Aurora.  I am the only female in North America that owns the airplane, walks the wings and flies it as well. My “new baby” just arrived last Friday.  This monster show Stearman is unlike any other on the airshow circuit.  Aside from her one of a kind paint design, it is her modifications that set her apart from any other airshow Stearman. Aurora is built with all new Douglas Fir spars and Stika Spruce wood.  She has a complete inverted fuel and oil system, an extra flying wire, all new bird cages, all new sheet metal, a stainless steel firewall, all new stainless steel cables, and all control bearings, pulleys, cables and hardware are new.  The wings have 4 equal span ailerons with servo tabs on the bottom.  The crowning jewel is the 450 Radial engine with steel cylinders instead of chrome, and it is equipped with an AirFlow Performance fuel injector and customized duel stack exhausts.  Aurora was restored by Jim Carlson and Ryan Dulas. You can visit Jane’s website at www.wingwalk.org....

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