2003 AKA Convention and Grand Nationals (Day 5)

Friday morning there were teams practicing all over the place… 9 masters teams came from all over the country to represent their regions. After the pilots meeting was held at 12pm we had an  brief but exclusive opportunity to get on the roof of the Air Force Museum for some arial-style photos as you can see below.

Remaining sport kite competition events were completed today… Masters Individual Multiline, Pairs and Team. Each category was hotly contested, particularly between the Northeast and Northwest regions in team and pairs… However, all teams showed excellent potential and promise good things for this sport with the prior decline in teams nationwide.

Winds were 10-15mph most of the day, with gusts up to 27mph during some of the final events… Weather was moderate though, despite somewhat difficult conditions and more frequent ticks or crashes, flying was still safe.

Indoor kite stars Lee and Deb Park were spotted flying outdoors, and Kitelife was there! Nudge, nudge… All in good fun, really.

Quad competition was a pleasure to watch, with several outstanding performances in both precision and ballet… 10 year old Zach Gordon finished in the top three for Masters Quad Precision, perhaps a new youth record.

I would have liked to get more photos from the single line area, but I found myself judging for a good part of the day and we do plan on adding beautiful photo galleries from Sam Ritter and Scott Weider with the next issue in a week or two… In all we gathered over 1,000 photos and will be doing a slideshow for the banquet on Saturday night.

The evening wound down with cocktails and a silent auction, then everyone moved into the main banquet hall for dinner and the loud auction which brought in over $25,000 for the American Kitefliers Association from attending fliers in exchange for some very unique and one of a kind pieces… This auction is an integral part of financing and expanding the AKA.

Well, it’s 3:30am yet again… And I need to get my slideshow finished in short fashion so I can play on my last day in paradise… Good night my friends.

Until tomorrow,

John Barresi