TAHOE/TRUCKEE, Calif. — It took a passion for aviation, for children and for the Truckee North Tahoe community to bring a small group of volunteers and sponsors together to produce, after a 16-year hiatus, an AirFair at the Truckee Tahoe Airport. Saturday, July 7, more than 10,000 attendees arrived and more than $25k (and still counting) was raised for local youth organizations.“It was great to see so many from our community enjoying the festivities and getting a closer look at our community airport. The Airport District Board of Directors has supported this idea both in concept and funding for a long time. It was great to have our local service clubs and nonprofits come forward and put forth the time and effort necessary to make the 2012 AirFair andamp; Family Festival the huge success it was,” said Kevin Smith, general manager of the Truckee Tahoe Airport. The AirFair andamp; Family Festival started on Friday night, July 6 with a dinner honoring two Tuskegee Airmen, Lt. Le Roy Gillead and Cpt. Les Williams. Evening highlights included a short video on the history of the Tuskegee Airmen, an honorary speech by Congressman Tom McClintock given for Gillead and Williams, along with other special comments by AirFair Chairman Tim LoDolce and Placer County Supervisor Jennifer Montgomery. Ted Owens, Nevada County Supervisor was also in attendance.“The evening was truly an honor to the Tuskegee Airmen and their devotion to our country and their struggles as the first African-Americans in the U.S. Armed Forces,” said Lo Dolce. “When I looked at the audience, I saw tears in people's eyes and smiles on their faces. It was an intimate, emotional, educational and memorable experience.”The main event started at 7 a.m. on Saturday morning. The Truckee Tahoe AirFair andamp; Family Festival included free Experimental Aircraft Association EAA Chapter 1073 Young Eagle flights for youth ages 8-17. The P-51 Man O' War flights were still happening because of demand on Sunday, July 8. This was the biggest demand for flights that the Commemorative Air Force has ever experienced at an air show.The Family Festival boasted an array of fun and educational activities, whether it was learning about aircraft, taking a ride on one or watching them soar through the sky. The festival also offered a participatory bike rodeo with ramps and an obstacle course; live music by SambaDa, a live two-hour radio remote from Truckee's KTKE 101.5; giant bubbles; face painting; arts and crafts, stilt walkers, a food court; beer garden; souvenirs; vendors and much more family fun, complementing the overall allure of the AirFair.The last Air Shows held at the Truckee Tahoe Airport were from 1974-1996. The 2012 AirFair featured periodic fly-overs including a “Parade of Planes” flown by local aviators in different and exciting aircraft.The Opening Ceremony at 11 a.m. featured the Just in Time Skydivers and the RedStar Formation Team.The Truckee Tahoe Airport District was the “Golden Wings” sponsor of this event, paying for all operational costs. All other sponsorship monies and proceeds will go directly to local youth programs.A special big thanks to sponsors!For more information about the Truckee Tahoe Airport, visit www.truckeetahoeairport.com. For more information about the Truckee Tahoe AirFair andamp; Family Festival, visit www.truckeetahoeairfair.com. For photo gallery, visit the Sierra Sun's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/SierraSun1.
The KidZone Museum is a nonprofit children's museum nationally recognized for its exemplary programs, exhibits and services to the underserved in the community. Visit www.kidzonemuseum.org.The Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 1073 of Truckee is an organization of pilots and aviation enthusiasts who promote the joy and freedom of flight and provide a variety of programs and services designed to continue the American aviation legacy for future generations. Visit www.eaa1073.org.The Truckee Optimist Club was chartered in the 1970s adopting the Optimist International creed and the goal of “Friend of Youth.” The organization is composed of working men and women whose goal it is to support community youths by providing funds to support programs, projects, grants, educational and sports activities, field trips and major scholarships. Their annual budget of nearly $50,000 is funded through fundraisers which include Christmas Tree sales, Truckee Brew Fest, cooking for events such as Truckee Clean-up Day and Big Truck Day, and now the AirFair andamp; Family Festival. Visit www.truckeeoptimist.com.
The Truckee Tahoe Airport District funded all of the infrastructure, insurance and other fixed costs for the AirFair andamp; Family Festival as a contribution to the community. The Airport District invites the community to visit the airport anytime to simply become more familiar with the facility, learn about available space for an array of programs and become educated on its various services. In brief, these include a Care Flight helicopter currently operating out of the airport 24 hours a day; accommodations for the Truckee Tahoe Composite Squadron of the Civil Air Patrol, who conduct search and rescue operations; an alliance with the American Red Cross to store supplies and equipment at the airport for emergency situations; extensive use of District Community rooms for local agencies and nonprofits for various meetings and events, and indoor facilities are available for youth athletic programs. Visit www.truckeetahoeairport.com.