Thursday, June 14, 2012

Jimmy Stewart Airport Festival 2012

One of the highlights of the late spring in the Laurel Mountains is the annual Jimmy Stewart Airport Festival held at the airport just outside of Indiana, PA.

One of the stars of this year's show was the Curtiss Wright SB2C Helldiver.

At approximately 3:36, and running a little over an hour behind schedule, the Helldiver makes its approach to the airport.

13 seconds after the previous picture, Pilot Mark Allen finally touches down.

A 1960 Piper PA-22160 Tri-Pacer.  With its 180 horsepower engine the airplane has a top speed of 94 miles per hour.

The SB2C Helldiver comes to its final resting place for the day in front of the terminal at Jimmy Stewart Airport.

With the rear canopy down, Pilot Mark Allen shows me how the rear gunner would have looked as they were flying over the Pacific.

Starboard side view of the SB2C.

Port side view of the SB2C.

1975 Great Lakes 2T-1A-2  A sports trainer and aerobatic aircraft capable of flying at a cruise speed of118 miles per hour.

1966 Piper Cherokee which belongs to the Indiana County Flying Club.  The Club was providing EAA Young Eagle Flights during the 2 day festival

Come winter time, this beast is put into operation clearing the runways at the airport.

H.W. of Nicktown gets a little pre-flight instruction about the twin 60 caliber machine guns mounted on the Helldiver prior to her flight.

Scott Rake brought his 1981 Pit Special to the airport on Sunday afternoon.

With its wings folded the Curtiss Wright SB2C shows what it would look like had it been sitting on the flight deck of the USS Franklin.

A couple of Army/Air Force re-enactors enjoy a game of chess in the shade of their Army tent on an 80+ degree afternoon.

The first of three Marine Corps CH46 makes its presence known in Indiana, PA.

After landing at the Jimmy Stewart Airport, a CH-46 helicopter of the Wild Goose squadron out of Norfolk, VA gets its tanks topped off in anticipation of it's departure to Akron, OH.

Last year the US Navy celebrated 100 years of aviation.   This year the US Marine Corps is celebrating their centennial of aviation history.  Helping to tell the story this WWII Navy PT-17 trainer built in 1942 sits along side one of the US Marine Corps CH-46 

Originally scheduled to be part of a 3 helicopter flight into the Jimmy Stewart Airport, this CH46 arrived an hour late due to a malfunction with the pilot's seat belt.

The last surviving flying Curtiss Wright SB2C Helldiver lands behind one of the CH-46s.

After two hours on the ground, during which time visitors were able to tour one of the CH-46 helicopters, the first of the trio of helicopters finally started to lift off to begin their flight to Akron and then Cincinnati, OH.

With the helicopter in the previous picture taking the lead the three Boeing Vertol CH-46 Sea Knights take to the air to begin their trip to Ohio.

Two of the CH-46 Sea Knights go around for a final fly-by for the crowd at the Festival, while the Curtiss Wright SB2C Hell Diver makes a low pass of its own to the joy of the crowd!

In all the years that I've been attending the airport festival, this is the first time that a float plane has ever made an appearance.  Between 1961 and 1981 these Cessna 185 6-passenger skywagons were built in both float and rigid landing gear configurations.

Helldiver climbing out after one of its low altitude passes across the airfield.

Boeing PT-17 landing.

PT-17 shortly after take-off.

Experimental home-built S-6S.  It took the owner 2 years to build the airplane which features a 4-cycle Rotax 100 horsepower engine.

Looking across the tarmac at the Curtiss Wright Helldiver as it sits in static display.

Originally known as a Northern American Aviation T-6 Texan, this trainer aircraft was also known as the SNJ5 in its Navy configuration.

Eurocopter Deatschland Gmbh turboshaft medical helicopter based in Kittanning, PA.
Model MBB-BK1772/C

Another Eurocopter based in Indiana, PA.
Model EC135 T-2

Local pilot Scott Rank takes off from Indiana, PA in his Pitt's Special.  As an acrobatic airplane the Pitt's Special can do 120 miles per hour in a straight line and is capable of diving at 200 miles per hour.

2009 Robinson 4-seat helicopter.

Jimmy Stewart Airport Festival Air Operations Crew

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