Forest Lake Airport (25D) is the “Home of 24 Hour Gas and 24 Hour Grass”. August 18 began as a beautiful day with clear skies and cool temperatures. Around noon a very light shower moved through the area. The day ended as beautifully as it began with a temperature in the mid-seventies and a breeze of one mile an hour.
The Forest Lake Airport Open House was a collaborative effort of The Forest Lake Airport Commission, the Forest Lake Lions Club, EAA Chapter 237 and Skydive Forest Lake.
EAA Chapter 237 began serving our now Famous Pancake Breakfast at 7:00am. The line for breakfast was steady but not overwhelming. We did well considering that this was our first year doing the breakfast at Forest Lake and the publicity was late in getting out. The Forest Lake Lions served lunch from 10:00am until late in the afternoon. They were constantly busy.
A five piece band and vocalist, the BBB Combo, entertained for the mid-day diners. They were very well received.
The car show brought out a large number of cars of all vintages and several trucks. One truck of special interest was a 1939 Ford flat bed with a Model N Ford tractor loaded. There were cars of every make, including a Delorian, and from every year going back to the thirties.
A view down the flight line shows a few of the aircraft attending
Visiting airplanes included the Stinson Trimotor from Greg Herrick’s Golden Wings collection, Pietenpols, one with a Rotec radial engine, Piper J-3s, Stearmans, Wacos, Luscombes, all shapes of Cessnas, newer Pipers, ultralights, and the Chapter 237’s pedal planes.
- Such determination. I’ll get you yet, Red Baron.
The Young Eagles flights began in earnest and continued all through the afternoon. There was no let up and the line at times stretched through the Young Eagles tent and to the next hangar. Everyone seemed very patient and waited for their turn in an airplane. The volunteers from the Forest Lake Airport were doing an admirable job of keeping the line moving and the pilots busy. It is unfortunate that no count of operations was kept but this was undoubtedly the busiest airport in Minnesota for the day. The air traffic was constant and operations were spaced to provide safe operation.
- On left in the yellow vest is John Schmidt who assured every Young Eagle got on an airplane
The Civil Air Patrol provided aircraft marshalling and kept them moving safely and quickly to and from parking and to the Young Eagles staging area.
At the end of the day 167 Young Eagles were given, what was likely, their first flight experience in a light aircraft. Fourteen pilots were kept very busy. John Schmidt of the Forest Lake Airport Commission was very busy registering Young Eagles. The pilots and ground crew can be very proud of their dedication, effort and contribution to provide this experience to young people.