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Model airplane group takes to the skies this weekend
Ornately detailed model airplanes and helicopters will take flight over the Arizona desert this weekend during the annual Yuma Aeromodelers Radio Control Model Airplane Airshow.
The three-day event will be held at Model Airfield, located at Blaisdell, about five miles north of the city of Yuma. The airfield is just off of Highway 95 near milepost 35. A map to the airfield is available at www.yumaaeromodelers.com.
“It is cheap, entertaining and fascinating,” Russ Verbael, a 13-year member of the Yuma Aeromodelers club, said about the event. “It is a chance to get out and breathe clean, fresh air out in the desert atmosphere.”
Weather permitting, the festivities will begin at 6 p.m. Friday with nighttime flying and a wiener roast. Free camping will be permitted at the field during the event.
The main event will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Food concessions will be presented by Boy Scout Troop 8053 of Yuma.
Event organizers expect about 25 “really nice model airplanes and excellent pilots” to participate, Verbael said. The pilots come from all over the desert Southwest and include both Yuma-area residents and winter visitors.
At noon, all of the model airplanes and helicopters used in the demonstration, along with about 25 additional static displays, will be parked on the runway where the public will be able to walk out and view them up close.
The air show will continue at 9 a.m. Sunday with a Fun Fly Contest and free Hobby Swap Meet.
During the event, a $5 per vehicle entry-parking donation will be requested from spectators. The parking has been improved to allow easier access to the airfield, Verbael said.
“In the past, our show has been held on the east side of the runway and spectator parking has been a problem. This year, we are going to be on the west side and we have tripled the parking capability. We think we can park 500 cars now.”
Yuma Aeromodelers is a group of 150 radio control enthusiasts affiliated with the Academy of Model Aeronautics with a stated purpose of promoting model aircraft activities, including building and flying model aircraft and teaching new members to fly model aircraft. Many of the club members are winter visitors from all over the nation.
For more information about the event or the Yuma Aeromodelers, visit www.yumaaeromodelers.com or call 1-406-781-7233.