No matter where you go for a big aviation fly-in, expect to see lots of RV’s. Sure, there are going to be hundreds of the flying kind – but you’ll see just as many (probably more) of the four-wheeled kind as folks bring the comforts of home to enjoy a week of aviation. Whether you are in Oshkosh or Lakeland, entire communities grow up overnight, with regular attendees showing up to renew acquaintances year after year. the main difference between Camp Scholler and the Sun ‘n Fun Campground? Best we can tell, its the Spanish Moss hanging from the trees- a sure sign that you’re not in the midwest!
Day Zero (the Monday before the show officially starts) dawned overcast with all of central Florida reporting low IFR conditions and a chance of rain. But by 10:00, the sun was peaking out of a broken layer and the sounds of airplanes arriving at KLAL were noticeable by noon. Major storms were yet to erupt by early afternoon, although a few overachieving clouds spit out a little moisture now and again to spot windshields – but not much more. Vendors were busy setting up all day, and a few were even open for business – we stocked up on our usual supply of nuts, bolts, rivets and what-nots at B&B Airports, an annual ritual to replace hardware used (or loaned to neighbors) over the year of maintaining and building airplanes. You get the best choices when you’re there a day early!
The unfortunate news that the USAF Thunderbirds cancelled their weekend appearance was speeding through the show grounds, and many vendors expressed concern about what this might do to attendance – but most felt that aviators looking for new airplanes and products will come regardless, and they’ll be here to talk and show their wares all week!