2008 AKA Convention: Day 3

“Kites rise highest against the wind, not with it.” – Winston Churchill

Given today is the day the kitemaking judging mostly happens on, how about we start with some art kites, show above and made by…. There’s an entire room of them that I discovered this morning on whats a usual routine for me. I’ll have some breakfast, then wander through the auction area, the raffle area and pop in on a couple of workshops before I head off down to the main fields. Today, a stroll through the gallery (featuring kites by Glen and Tanna Haynes) the three shown above are contained within, plus a stop in the Sport Kite Symposium. Managed by Jim Barber and Dave Gomberg, there was some good relevant discussion on some ideas to bring more competitors into events, and a look at was working and what was not. There were no rule changes issues that came up and it was one of the more peaceful meetings I’ve been to in the last few years. Other workshops included Brooks Leffler’s KAP workshop and one put on by Scott Weider covering photography at kite festivals.

And, piece by piece, more and more items were coming into both the auctions and bag raffles. As tomorrow’s weather isn’t looking to be too spectacular, maybe I’ll take a detailed stroll through some of the auction items. Saturday isn’t looking an awful lot better so, I suspect any chance of comp events being shuffled to a nicer day are running about slim, nil and none. So, my advice for tomorrow is, wear rain gear… But today? It wasn’t too bad really. While you can see that it was cloudy all afternoon down on the fields, there was certainly useable wind and it wasn’t chilly out at all, so, there just wasn’t too much to complain about, so far, 3 decent days with mostly decent tho sometimes low and variable… winds.

Thursday means “Kite makers day outside” where the majority of competition surrounding hand made kites and how they fly happens. Unlike last year at Ocean Shores where weather issues forced most of this competition inside, it was nice enough out for it all to occur down at the field. One by one, the various categories took to the air, all announced by Phil Broder so you could tell who’s was who’s kite in the air while the judges made their rounds to the individual entries. Most of the categories had a really good assortment of work being shown. I’ll get some more complete pictures at the People’s Choice awards on Saturday evening to showcase a few of the prettier kites that were seen this afternoon.

Mass Ascensions continued throughout the day and, an impromptu quad megafly erupted off in one of the fields for the better part of the afternoon as well, which was great to see. In previous years there had been a dedicated quad/multiline time slot but with the absence of one this year, it was amusing to see one take place regardless of there being a scheduled “slot” for the mayhem to ensue. Roughly 24 flyers were involved off and on during the afternoon, making for some great displays and ooohing and aaaahing at ball bursts.

At one point, the local ABC news people were wandering around, and managed to get some of the cellular mass ascension onto TV this evening, as well as a bit about the festival itself :

ABC News clipping

What else does “Thursday” mean for the AKA convention? The Fly Market! Well attended as usual, while there seemed to be a couple people less selling this yer, there was a larger variety and sheer volume of articles being sold. Helped by a larger room than has been typical with this event in previous years, it made for a fun social event for the evening.

And to finish off a well rounded day, a stop into the kite pin challenge and miniature kites on display. Part of the fun with the miniatures can be the oft lengthy descriptions to go with the kites. I was particularly taken with the witch however, this would be perfect for halloween! Now if they’d only been for sale in the fly market…And no, there were no good rev pins to be had, coerced, lifted or absconded with in the pin challenge this year. Foiled again! Tomorrow? Ideally, weather permitting, the last day of sport kite competition and the GREAT AUCTION!

3 days down, 2 to go…

David Hathaway