Reception and Open House

By Marilyn Ramsey

Photos available

Hi everyone,

Today was the Reception and Open House at the New England Air Museum. I arrived at 9:00 am to catch a couple more photos and see the setup. Guests began arriving at 9:30 am, and Walt Watson and I answered questions and talked about the tour and airplane.

Louis ChĂȘnevert,head of Pratt & Whitney
Louis Chênevert
head of Pratt & Whitney
The Program started at 11:00. The head of the museum made opening remarks. Then he introduced Merrie Scott from the AIAA offices in Washington DC who gave a wonderful talk on the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics and the Evolution of Flight Program. Next it was my turn (see attached). Then the head of Pratt & Whitney spoke; I was very impressed. Did you know that around the world, a Pratt & Whitney engine takes off every three seconds!?

The museum will be bringing in classes of kids to see the airplane, and a troop of local boy scouts will be having a campout around tbe Wright Flyer. The airplane is roped off with the most wonderful stantions of natural wood and thick rope. It looks great! The museum also hosts many private parties, and the local AIAA Section holds their monthly meetings on site.

After the ceremonies, I talked to all the guests and answered questions along with team member Walt Watson.

Wright Replica Engine #19
An individual came over to me and asked if I worked for the FAA. I said yes, I did. He asked, do you work in L.A.? It turned out to be Ken Roach who used to be in Flight Standards when Bill Withycomb was a branch manager in the mid-1980s! He is now the manager of the Flight Standards District Office in Hartford. What a surprise to run into someone I knew over 15 years ago in L.A.! I had brought my package on the Charlie Taylor/Aviation Mechanics Day and CD from Richard Dillbeck so I could contact someone from that office. I briefly told Ken, and he said he had the perfect contacts and would pursue Connecticut having a Charlie Taylor/Aviation Mechanics Day.

At this point, I was able to go out to the building where their volunteers were working on a Wright Replica Engine #19. Now, I see how it comes together! We have a casting of the 1903 engine and are pursuing completing a replica for possible alternate use on our airplane.

I just returned to the hotel from the museum. It is 5:30 pm and it is getting very cold outside! According to all weather channels, we may have snow on the ground by morning - not a bad storm, but snow nonetheless! I am catching a plane home tomorrow. See you!



The Wright Flyer, in her surroundings
The Wright Flyer is displayed in the military wing,
surrounded by (from left to right) an F-4 Phantom II, F-105 Thunderchief,
DC-7 cockpit, B-25 Mitchell, F4U Corsair, and F6F Hellcat; anyone know
what glider is hanging above the picture?



Good Morning. Thank you so much! Its wonderful to be here.

I joined the Wright Flyer Project about ten years ago. Someone told me about this beautiful little airplane and that I just had to go see it.

That day, I met the Wright brothers -- all 15 of them! This team is made up of pilots, aerospace engineers, and yes, rocket scientists.. and of people like me who love aviation.

When I joined the project, I heard terms like NASA and wind tunnel test but I had no idea of the amazing adventures in store that this little airplane would take us on.

Many on the Wright Flyer Team have been working together on this project for over twenty years. Every week, they dedicate their Saturdays to working on this amazing effort.

Now, while this airplane is on tour through December 2003, the team is hard at work building the flight replica. The goal is to be able to fly safely and repeatedly to celebrate the genius of the Wright brothers.

When the flight replica is completed, another adventure begins! The team will be working with NASA Dryden at Edwards AFB in California - guided by a carefully designed Flight Test Plan.

The flight tests will take place on the NASA Dryden Dry Lake Bed. That is made up of seven miles of natural runway in all directions that is as smooth as glass. In fact, it is the alternate landing site in case of bad weather for the space shuttle!

The Wright Flyer team has a new home base to build the flight replica. The adventure continues with a company called Microcosm. Our special thanks to President Jim Wertz for believing in our dream to fly.

And as we work on the airplane every Saturday, we look out into the Microcosm bay, and we see "nose cones", "rockets", "fuel tanks" - lots of "SPACE STUFF!"

You see, Microcosm is a private company bravely opening the pathways of space to private industry!

Microcosm and the AIAA Wright Flyer Project are working side-by-side in the same building. "The Past" meets "The Future", Hand-in-Hand reaching for our respective dreams of flight.

The Wright Flyer Team: hoping to fly 120 feet
Microcosm: looking to the stars.

Again, we thank you all for sharing in our adventure. If you have any questions, come see me after the program and I will be glad to answer any questions.

Its a pleasure being here! Thank you!

Before the ceremonies, the members of the New England Air Museum
showed us their current project - restoration of a B-29 (one of the
most beautiful airplanes ever - Ed

Copyright © 2002, AIAA Wright Flyer Project, all rights reserved.

Back to Tour Page