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Issue 8 (Mar/Apr 1999): Reader Feedback


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#1 Mike Gillard (RIP)

Mike Gillard (RIP)


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Posted 01 March 1999 - 04:00 AM

Tangents and Trivia, January Issue

I really enjoyed reading your article. Train day is my favorite day at Long Beach International. One of my favorite memories there was coming to the aid of a new train building couple as a storm came in and caught them unprepared. I don't mind being a conductor on one. It's the patience in the building that I lack.

Have you made any non sewn trains?

I'll be patiently waiting for next months article.

Best Breezes,

Penny Lingenfelter

No doubt, trains are an eye-catcher. Thanks for the note.

Get the Public Involved at AKA Convention

This year the AKA convention wil be held in Muncie, Indiana, only a two hour drive from my home town, Bloomington.

As a Hoosier Kiteflyers member, I would like to welcome everyone to Indiana on Oct. 5-9. The National headquarters of the Academy of Model Aeronautics is a great facility. Muncie is situated 90 mins. northeast of Indianapolis and the land in this region is generally flat - great for smooth and steady winds. 1000 acres of flat space!

I am another kiteflyer who has been bitten by the kite bug (HARD!) and wish to help promote this beautiful and uplifting activity.

It is my intention to educate the media in the Indy and Muncie area about this very exciting event - namely, the AKA Grand National Convention. I would persue contacts I have in television, radio and newspaper. However, this would be a wasted effort if no public spectators are allowed into the event. Perhaps it wouldn't be a total waste, but I don't intend on making the extra effort if the viewers of a television program, radio program, or newspaper article can't follow through by attending.

I realize this has been discussed here before. After researching all the relevant articles in the rec.kites archive on DejaNews, it seems we are all still divided in whether the convention should be *only* for members or open to the public. I've come up with a proposal which should meet some middle ground:

Make Saturday the 9th open to the public. Tues though Friday will be members only, with the following exception: Make available an AKA day pass for 5 dollars a day. Each pass could serve as a $5 discount from a real AKA membership for $25. If someone attends 2 days, they can shell out $15 for the full membership. If someone buys a pass for each day, *boom* they're a full-fledged member! Workshops, dinners, etc. would still be closed to the public. The day pass would not supercede this, you would still need to purchase a full membership to attend workshops.

In a previous post someone stated to the effect: "There are enough festivals open to the public during the rest of the year that the public can attend." I agree. There are plenty of opportunities during the year to recruit members and we should all help to do more recruiting in the smaller festivals. But the AKA convention is the Grand Daddy of all Kite Festivals and has more potential to impact the public than any other event. If you've read the January 99 AKA magazine/newsletter, there is *much* emphasis on recruiting new members. Then, why is it that we have decided to shut out the public at the event that has the most chance of recruiting new members than any other event. Personally, I feel this is a huge contradiction.

While I see alot of complaints in this newsgroup without any real proposal of solution, I'm willing to put my money where my mouth is. I will donate the day-passes out my own pocket.

I can design them (graphic artist by trade) and print them, *and* I'll volunteer to help with any other related orginazational tasks associated with the passes. It's my view that when John/Jane Q. Public gets his/her pass that they will understand that this is normally an event only for members. This is only an outline.

Pricing structure for the passes could be targeted to families instead of individuals. Obviously, the Press should be allowed (or better yet, invited) to attend for free.

Your feedback (and alternate ideas!) on this is greatly appreciated.

I have forwarded this post directly to the AKA. You may wish to do the same. If it turns out the public will be allowed to attend, I will kick serious butt to promote this event. In rural Indiana, the most exciting events (other than the Indy races- 500, Brickyard 400 and Formula 1 in year 2000) there is nothing but flea markets and county fairs. This could be a major cultural event for families in these parts who are already starved for excitement. Saturday the 9th would be open to them - most working folks wouldn't be able to attend on tues through Friday anyway.

Whew! I'm done.

-Mark Kunoff

Bloomington, Indiana

Galveston Buggy Thang

Wish Jan and I had paid more attention to the stuff going on in the hot tub. Us old folks went to bed early and missed out.

It was a great time from the Galvez digs, the weather(GREAT), to seeing old faces and some new. Jan got to give her new Allegro its maiden flight and may convince her to keep on flying instead of sitting and watching.

Hope that we can do it again next year.

Chris "The Bigfoot" Christensen


Dave's World, January Issue

I know David knows this industry far better than I. Nor do I have any numbers to change is view of "net-kite stores". Yet he says, "Most on-line store don't generate new kitefliers.". I though, am one who now is hooked on this hobby of kites and it was all because of the internet.

I wanted a dual-line kite, didn't even know the word stunt kites then. By searching the internet I found not only kite stores, but rec.kites, and access to hundreds of other flyers. I have introduced at least three other people to kiting and all of us shop thru the net, due to limited access to kite stores.

I have now been in five kite stores, only one has offered the information, help, and assistance that I get everytime I talk to a "net" store. Only once have I found the kite I was looking for in a local store.

I agree, I hate to see any store, be it the net, or local close. But I think the net stores do introduce people to kiting as well.

Just the opinion of a land locked kite fanatic,



I like the new feature, Kite Craft and hope that future editions will be as good as this one.


Jim Crumley

More KiteCraft

Dear KiteLife.com,

I am writing to express my gratitude to Dick Barnes for the KiteCraft column. As noted in the article, Dick markets these kites, so providing kite builders with an opportunity to build their own Pizazz sport kite is an extremely generous gesture. I am a very novice kite builder and the level of detail associated with the instructions makes it easy for even me to follow along in making the kite.

Thank you Dick, and thank you KiteLife.com.

Yours sincerely,

Ian Richards

And Yet More KiteCraft

Hello Mike and the Kitelife staff,

Just wanted to let you all know what a great idea I think the new Kitecraft section is. A great big THANK YOU to Dick Barnes for sharing his Pizazz with the readers. Being the proud owner of one of Dick's kites I know how great they fly and the opportunity to sew one with Dick's help is going to be great fun. I've got the sail all sewn and the applique done so I'm looking forward to the next installment.

Thanks again Dick and Kitelife for making the plans available. I look forward with great anticipation to the next issue. They just seem to get better and better!

Rod Thrall

Hillsboro, Oregon

Jim, Ian, and Rod... Glad you are enjoying KiteCraft. Make sure to send us pics of your finished kites!


Really like your E-zine, Keep up the outstanding work. My favorites have been the kitemaker profiles and I am following the construction article. great stuff.

Any chance of getting someone to write an article or two on KAP.

Yours in Flight


Hi David, thanks for the note. We hope to feature KAP in a future issue.

Here's a Pic

Firstly, let me just congratulate you on a great kite site... very refreshing... enjoyed flying around (Anita... check it out on http://www.kitelife.com).

Noticed that you are prepared to publish readers pics so have attached one of my favourites (TigraRevolution.jpg).

This picture was taken during September 98 at St. Pierre La Mer - Sth. France and shows me landing my precious Revolution 1.5 on my (even more precious but sadly now gone!) Opel Tigra.

Many thanks to Anita Vanderlinden for the amazing photo!

Hope you like it. Keep up the good work!


PS: Just in case you are interested: The car had to go as I recently became a proud father and needed just a tad more space on board... the kite(s) of course stay! My boy will love them!!!

Looking forward to reading the next issue.

Great pic Keith, it is in this issue's Gallery.

Everyone is Going to Ivanpah But Me

I think Ivanpah is going to be something very special for the Tulsa Wind Riders this year - all the Buggymen are going to be there. There is a frenzy to buy tires and equiptment, tickets, well you name it they got it, except beer. They said they can buy it out there - they are sure Mike Smathers will want to chip in. I am sure they are right - Mike is just that kind of guy, always giving .(a hard time)

The sad part of this happy time is I won't be there to write about it or take excellent pictures of my thumb, so I will have to do some asking around to get the good stuff everyone wants to know - the GOSSIP. beer.

We want to know:

All hot tub stories - true or not

How much you lost in the casino ( we would like to be friends with any winners)

Who got the first bandaid

Anything you wouldnt tell your mother

Words of wisdom by Freeman ( By the way - Carrie says to tell him hi and come to Tulsa May 8th & 9th )

I will be here at home, working hard to earn money to go to Galveston for the Thanksgiving Buggy Thang. I will have to go out and fly fighter kites with Dave and E.W. and plan our next good time. beer. So everyone have fun, drink a beer for me and send me pictures and stories of fun things you did.

Collette Lemons

Tulsa Wind Riders

Wish I were going, too.

New Quad Kite

Just a short note to let you know that a new Quadline Kite is on the horizon. Designed by Steve LaPorte, AKA Exp. Class Nat'l Champion in Individual Quadline & Freestyle. This kite is truley a joy to fly.

Similar in flight characteristics to a Rev but with a whole new look & feel . More "Flyer Friendly" the "Paradox" has an 80 in. wingspan & is 32 in. high. An arched center spine allows for a much more stable & balanced kite. Yes, it deadlaunches & parks in any wind without having to stake down your handles. Reverse flight & inverted hovers are a breeze & the way the "Paradox" Floats across the window in an inverted slide without loosing altitude will take you breath away. The "Paradox" is very precise & for those competitors wanting to combine Precision & Ballet in one Quadline this is the kite for you. With a wind range of 3 - 20 & a slick new graphics design every Quad flyer who has flown even the Prototypes wants one.

Steve will be producing these himself & they should be available through his upcoming Webpage. Be on the lookout for Photos & more info to come.

Sounds great, Steve. Let us know when it is ready for a review.

No Secrets Kite Trains

I was wondering when the next part of the NO SECRETS kite trains will be up. Or if I have been to stupid to see that it is already up, please direct me to the link. Also , does Al Hargus have an e-mail address ?

I would like to take this oportunity to thank you for putting this great magazine together. It is just getting better and better. And its the only magazine I can find and afford here in South Africa.

Thank you so much

Peter Rodda

Due to a slip, we lost several of the diagrams that were noted in the No Secrets Trains article. If you would like them, send us an e-mail with "Train Diagram" in the subject line.

(Editor's Note 10/1/04: Part 2 of this article was completed in issue 38, Sep/Oct 2004)
Mike Gillard

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