Oshkosh 2017: A Little Bit of Everything

There are few places as sacred to the aviation community as Oshkosh, Wisconsin. Each year, hundreds of thousands of aviation geeks and enthusiasts descend on Whitman Regional Airport for the annual “AirVenture” airshow and convention. You may even recall our trip from 2014. (We also attended in 2016, but didn’t get the post written…)

This year, we loaded up the ‘ol Honda machine and made the four hour trek to aviation mecca. Maybe we’ll fly the Pacer some year soon, but for now, the drive is easy and allows for frequent stops with a toddler.

We spent the night prior to our Oshkosh arrival in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin. It’s a great little city that is about 45 minutes south of Oshkosh. Many fellow aviators were present at our hotel. We even found a great park for Flynn to enjoy.

After a good night’s sleep (well, as good as it gets with a toddler) we loaded up around 8 a.m. and pointed the nose toward KOSH.

Arriving at Oshkosh!

Unlike some air arrivals, our entrance to the big show was uneventful. We drove right in, paid our $10 to park, and got a pretty good spot with a short walk. Short for Oshkosh, anyway.

A quick visit to the wristband/admissions counter and we were on our way. First stop? Vintage!

Vintage area at EAA AirVenture
It was a beautiful day in the Vintage area!

The Vintage area is one of our favorite places. It’s more quiet than some of the other areas, and it features some of our favorite airplanes. We poked around the gift shop, found Flynn a new t-shirt, and picked up a new Vintage Aircraft Association hat.

Also nearby is the Theater in the Woods and a place for kids to play. Flynn definitely made use of that, which was also a great way to get some shade.

Flynn added to his toy collection at the famous Red Barn.
Flynn enjoying a skywriter while having a morning snack.

Aircraft Spotting

I get that a lot of people go to Oshkosh to walk through the exhibit halls or camp with friends. But I think it’s safe to say we go for the airplanes. While Amber and Flynn checked out KidVenture, I enjoyed some time sitting on the flight line and walking around the main area of the show.

Ending a Long Day

After we’d seen enough of the airshow (always a highlight), it seemed like a good time to pack up and head back to Iowa. It’s a “short” four hour drive.

To recap the day, there’s just nothing like Oshkosh. We’re rarely able to make an entire week (or even several days) work out in our schedule, but even putting our feet on the ground at the center of aviation is worth the trip. Being immersed in aviation, where the mood is generally positive, is always a good thing.

And as a bonus? We were treated to a beautiful Iowa sunset as we rolled into our home city of Cedar Rapids.

Iowa puts on quite a show some evenings.

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