This past weekend marked the debut of PAPA’s monthly Display Days for 2009. Local and visiting pilots were quick to take advantage of the opportunity to share their aircraft with the public – and to make good use of the unseasonably pleasant flying weather.
PAPA officers and member volunteers showed up early to setup the venue, which is now bigger than you may have seen at last year’s Display Days. A generous portion of the tarmac was roped off to allow visitors comfortable access to about 20 aircraft that were on display. And, for the first time, hot dogs and refreshments were sold for a modest fee and picnic tables placed as close to the taxi-way and runway as possible, which gave attendees a prime view of takeoffs and landings while they munched some lunch. All told, about 250 people came by to check out the action throughout the day.
Several aircraft dropped in from out of town to take part in the event, including a Beechcraft T-34 based out of Livermore, and two Sport Cubs that came over from Hollister. Local aircraft on display included six gorgeous biplanes – four Stearmans and two Wacos that can often be seen drumming about over downtown Petaluma – a Beechcraft Bonanza, several Piper Cubs, and a twin-engine Piper PA-30, among others. You can see a full gallery of photos from the entire day here: http://www.flyphotoguy.com/gallery/7136662_Bdj5S#P-1-20.
The goal of the Display Days is to give the public access to some of the unique classic and antique aircraft that are based at Petaluma Municipal Airport, and nearby airports as well. Most pilots allow visitors to look in the cockpits and are on-hand to tell you just about anything you want to know about their aircraft, and the world of general aviation.
The Display Days take place on the third Saturday of each month, and they start at 10:00 am and go until 3:00 pm. So come on out for the next one – you just never know what you are going to see! — Steve Klett