The open day at North Shore Aero Club’s Dairy Flat airfield on March 27 exceeded the organisers’ expectations, with a crowd of more than 3000 turning up to take a look at some unique aircraft.
Organiser Rodger Coleclough says there was “a tidal wave” of cars lined up to get into the event, and some of the food stalls ran out of food.
He says there were a lot of children keen to get up close to dozens of aircraft, including some built by club members.
Activities for the younger ones included face painting and treasure hunts, as well as sitting in an amphibious aircraft or exploring the Navy Seasprite helicopter.
Rides in two 1930s Tiger Moths were popular, along with the display by the neighbouring North Shore Remote Control Club, which included aerobatics by propeller and jet-powered models.
Three helicopters, including an ex-US army Black Hawk and a Navy Seasprite complete with machine guns, were also crowd-pleasers.
Also on display were around 20 club members’ aircraft, ranging from a very rare 1930s Aeronca to a replica WWII P51 Mustang, an amphibian Microlight and a recently completed Vans aircraft kit.
“We were blown away with the response,” Rodger says. “It’s 10 years since we had an open day and it was great to invite the community in.”
He says it was so well received that the club intends to do it again in two years’ time.