The public will have the opportunity to admire Seymour from the air during the annual Air Ride Day at the Freeman Army Airfield Museum.
The event, which runs Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., will give adults, children and families the chance to board planes with pilots flying over the city.
A tax deductible donation of $ 20 per person will be accepted and the proceeds will go to the museum. Air travel will be in front of the museum, 1035 Ave., at the large white tent.
The event is popular with children and pilots can even help them locate their home from the air during the flight.
The waivers of each passenger must be signed before each trip. Those under 18 must have a parent or guardian sign for them. Reservations are not necessary.
Museum curator Larry Bothe said there would be 12 pilots among seven planes for the rides. Each pilot has at least 500 flight hours, as required by the Federal Aviation Administration.
“Most pilots have over 1,000 hours of experience,” he said. “Plus, most planes have four seats, so pilots can only take three passengers at a time.”
The weight limit for one passenger is around 250 pounds and the combined weight of the three passengers cannot exceed 450 pounds, Bothe said.
“There will also be 23 volunteers on the ground to help because you also have to maintain safety on the ground, not just safety in the air,” he said. “About two-thirds of the people attending the event are children, and sometimes they run around unsupervised, so we need to keep them safe.”
Passengers will be escorted to and from planes for added safety by volunteers called loaders.
The Seymour Fire Department will dispatch a fire engine to the scene along with a few firefighters who are also emergency medical technicians in case someone needs emergency assistance.
“A few members of the Seymour Police Department will also be here,” Bothe said. “We asked them to bring their indestructible tank-like tactical vehicle, and the kids love it.”
Participants will be able to ride in the Robinson Aerobatic 500 horsepower Steamin Stearman biplane for an additional fee. Prices are $ 120 for a gentle ride and $ 150 for a wild ride. One person at a time can participate in this airplane tour.
A glider and other planes and military vehicles will also be on display at the airport during Saturday’s event, and food and drink will be available for purchase.
While participating in Airplane Ride Day, the public can also visit the two museum buildings for free. They include items from the days when the Freeman Army Airfield was in operation.
There are two story rooms when the area served as a training base for pilots flying advanced twin-engine aircraft during WWII.
The airfield was built primarily to train pilots of advanced twin-engine aircraft, including some of the Tuskegee aviators, between 1942 and 1945. The airfield graduated 4,237 pilots between 19 promotions.
If you are going to
What: Freeman Army Airfield Museum Day Plane Ride
When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday
Where: Plane flights will be in front of the Freeman Army Airfield Museum, 1035 Ave., Seymour, in the Large White Tent.
Cost: Plane flights for a tax deductible donation of $ 20 per person; additional fees are required for biplane aerobatics (light ride $ 120 and wild ride $ 150); food and drinks will be available for purchase
Free activities: Visits to the Freeman Army Airfield museum and exhibition of gliders, airplanes and military vehicles
Information: Larry Bothe at 812-521-7400