The 24th annual Stearman Fly-In was held in
St. Francis, KS, June 10 and 11, 2006.
The weather mostly cooperated, and approximately
90 aircraft attended,
hot air balloons and
Many spectators took
rides in the
Stearmans, enjoying the
magnificent view from the open cockpit, while listening to the
throaty roar of the
radial engine, and marveling at the
capability of the fabric covered aircraft which are six decades
Dr. Curt Kimball of Sterling, CO, won the Stearman
contest. Dr. Kimball was the founder of the event, and the only
pilot who has attended all 24 Fly-Ins.
seven loads and 22 skydives, filling the sky with their
canopies and thrilling the crowds with
landings. Due to a last minute cancellation, tandem jumps were
not available this year. This cancellation also reduced
the number of skydives made.
The weather was problematic for the balloonists, and no flights
were made on Saturday. On Sunday, three balloons began to
inflate, but a rapid wind shift stopped two of them, while the
John Kugler of McCook, Nebraska, was able to fly a short
flight which ended in a gentle stand-up landing. The crowd
had the thrill of seeing hot air balloons when they
misbehave--seven story high bubbles of air swaying erratically in the
wind, but in slow motion.
airplanes flew in, including many
pilots enjoyed the show and ate breakfast or lunch on the field
while others admired the large collection of
Check out the
photos to see some of the aircraft.