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Sun, Apr 15, 2007

Slidell Air Show A Great Success

Event 'At Least Four Times Larger' Than Last Two

The numbers are in... and the Slidell Airshow, held Saturday, March 31, at Slidell Municipal Airport in Louisiana, attracted an estimated 10,000 people and raised $5,200 for the St. Tammany Association for Retarded Citizens. Those numbers reflect attendance numbers "at least four times larger" than in the past two years, event organizers tell ANN.

Over 260 people attended the special dinner the night before the show dedicated to veterans of the Vietnam War. Guest speaker for that event was retired Air Force Col. Murphy Neal Jones who spent six-and-a-half brutal years as a prisoner of war in what was then North Vietnam.

After a morning flying Young Eagles for the area youth, Civilian and Military acts performed. Civilian aerobatic acts included Ken Appezzato in his Pitts; Charlie Kulp, aka "The Flying Farmer," and his comedy act in his J-3 Cub; Phillip, Jody and Robby Grice separately flying a T-6, Christian Eagle and Ag Cat; and Dofin Fritts in his gyrocopter.

Civilian fly-bys included Ben Kennedy (Falcon 20 jet), Darryl Christen (L-39 Russian jet), Bill Triay (Stearman), Eric Covell (R-44 helicopter), and Gina Moore of Warbird Sky Ventures (T-6).

Military performances included a Black Hawk helicopter demo, an H-60 Coast Guard rescue demo, and an A-10 demo flying in formation with a P-51 Mustang from the World War II era. Military fly-bys included an Air Force C-130, Marine Corps Huey and Cobra helicopters, Customs Tri-Star helicopter and Air Force F-15 jets.

The show also featured numerous ground displays. Among them: a Louisiana National Guard NASCAR display and pontoon bridge-building vehicle; Textron Marine and Land Systems armored security vehicle; several St. Tammany Fire District 1 fire trucks, Air Force flight simulator and mini-raptor; antique car display, and a radio-controlled aircraft display.

FMI: www.flyincalendar.com/event_detail.cfm?e=2658&m=3&y=2007

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