Well folks, here we are… Our 50th issue, and nearly seven years of work behind us! It all started with Mike Gillard’s dream of bringing a kiting publication to the North American public when there were none to be had, with all the advantages of web content… Since then, we’ve stepped it up a notch by converting and archiving some very classic out of print publications, videos, and more.
As many of you know, I pretty much grew up in the kiting community and I can’t begin to express how important it is to me that we preserve our modern heritage, promoting kiting and all of it’s inherent beneficial aspects to as many people as possible… I feel that we’ve done a fair job on our end, and hope to continue expanding the scope of our activities and archives as time goes on.
While kiting continues regardless, we’ve clearly seen a decline in the size of our community over the last ten years or so. Thanks to the work of many however, I feel that we are seeing the beginning stages of another period of growth… It’s hard for me to put into words, more of a sense really, but as far as the tangible, I am seeing clear growth in the Northwest as the flight orders get larger and larger, even more excitement coming forth event after event! One of the largest areas of growth we’ve seen is in the multiline events, with members of iQuad inspiring quite a few people to get involved with quad line kites, and reaching out to the public with their own brand of publicity.
Granted, I am a proud member of this team but with 16 years of flying behind me, I’m seeing a response unlike any I’ve seen in quite a while… I hope to see this continue as we travel and promote more often.
The next year will see me retiring from individual dual line events (again) in order to focus more on Kitelife and the iQuad project… I’ve not been able to spend as much time as I like on the magazine, flying in anywhere from 9-14 categories at every single competition. With luck, I’ll be able to spend more time taking photos (you’ll notice we don’t have any galleries in this issue), conducting interviews, etc.
Last but not least, I’ll be on my way to Iowa the day this issue is released, headed for the 2006 AKA Grand Nationals in Des Moines, IA. This will be my 12th convention, and we’ll be serving up daily updates as we’ve been doing since 2002… If you’d like up to date photos, competition results, festival highlights and more, be sure to visit our daily updates during the first week of October.
As always, I encourage our readers to consider becoming an official Kitelife Subscriber. Not only do our subscribers help us keep doing what we do, but they get some pretty nifty benefits as well… And whether or not you’re a subscriber, you can also show your support with some of the really cool gear we’ve got on CafePress – Kitengruven, Buggygruven, Quadengruven, iQuad, even WWJF… Take a look here!