Classic Memories at the Cape Fear Jetport
The B-17 tour stop was canceled, but EAA Chapter 939 quickly planned a great WWII-themed event in its place.
The WWII B-17 bomber Aluminum Overcast was scheduled to make a stop on its National Tour at the Cape Fear Regional Jetport over Memorial Day weekend. The aircraft, owned and operated by the nonprofit Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) based in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, is one of only 12 airworthy examples of the 12,732 of the bombers produced from 1935 through 1945.
The bomber regularly makes tours to introduce the public to a living piece of history and to honor the memory of those who served in the horrific world-wide conflict more than 75 years ago. According to EAA Chapter 939 President Rich Largent, the EAA previously made the Cape Fear Regional Jetport a stop on the tours in 2014, 2015 and 2018.
Sadly, EAA notified Chapter 939 in April that maintenance issues had grounded the B-17 and caused cancelation of the tour schedule. Therefore, Aluminum Overcast will not be visiting the Cape Fear region on Memorial Day weekend.
However, within one day, the board of directors of EAA Chapter 939 voted to pivot and present a day of Classic Memories at the Cape Fear Jetport. The emphasis will be on WWII-era historical artifacts that represent our nation and its Allies’ commitment to triumphing over the Axis powers.
WWII military aircraft will be exhibited. A P-51D, AT-6, T-28 and a German Bucker trainer have committed to participate, weather permitting. The Cape Fear Cruisers, Tri-Beach Cruisers, Wilmington Antique Automobile Club and the Wilmington British Car Club have been invited to display their classic cars.
An exhibit area will contain a variety of WWII memorabilia including uniforms, weapons and accessories. Storyboards with period photographs will help the visitor understand the war and how veterans sacrificed and contributed to maintaining the freedoms enjoyed by citizens of the Allied nations.
The EAA membership ranges from non-pilot aviation enthusiasts, builders of experimental aircraft and recreational flyers to airline professional pilots.
“EAA is committed to promoting all aspects of aviation,” Largent says, “including the education of the non-flying public through programs like the Young Eagles, Eagle Flight, Learn to Fly seminars, local parade participation and Family Fun Days such as Classic Memories. All are invited to come out to your community airport, learn a little history and share in the festivities!”
Want to go?
Classic Memories at the Cape Fear Regional Jetport
Saturday, May 29, 2021, 8:30 am to 3 pm
Cape Fear Regional Jetport, 4015 Airport Road SE, Southport
Admission is free
WWII military aircraft including a P-51D, a AT-6, a T-28 and a German Bucker, weather permitting. The Cape Fear Cruisers, Tri-Beach Cruisers, Wilmington Antique Automobile Club and the Wilmington British Car Club have been invited to display their classic cars.
EAA Chapter 939 is hosting a pancake breakfast from 8:30 to 11:30 am on Saturday, May 29. Breakfast will consist of pancakes, sausage, coffee and juice for $6. Hot dogs, hamburgers, packaged snacks, water and soda will be sold from 11:30 am to 2 pm or until sold out.
Brunswick Big Band will be providing music from 1 to 3 pm. Community members are invited to bring a chair and enjoy the dynamic musical stylings of this local musical group.