The Moraine Airpark on Clearview Road is one of Moraine’s hidden gems. One historical special event that will take place at the airpark in 2019 is the EAA (Experimental Aircraft Association) Sunday Funday Fly-in, the nation’s longest running same day fly in. This year celebrating its 60th anniversary, the Sunday Funday Fly-In will expand to two days of aviation excitement on May 4 & 5. Specific program events will be listed in the May Moraine Messenger and on the City of Moraine website. The tentative program includes experimental, regular and vintage airplanes on display, food & refreshments, aviation booths and tentatively an airshow.
The Moraine Airpark moved from its original Lamme Road location in Miami Township to Moraine in the mid-1950’s. Through the years the Moraine Airpark has hosted great events and many famous people have flown here. Here is a look at some colorful airpark facts:
Famous individuals: Arthur Godfrey (TV host), Gordon Jump (WQRP in Cincinnati), Chuck Yeager (flying ace and record setting test pilot), Dick Rutan (record-breaking aviator who piloted the Voyager aircraft around the world non-stop), Jeffrey Skiles (co-pilot to Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger who landed the United Airways flight 1549 in 2009 in the Hudson River in New York City).
Phil Donahue did a TV show on Moraine’s parachute club.
The Kings Island Airshow based in Moraine, put on nightly shows at the amusement park seven nights a week for seven years making it the longest running airshow in history. Pilots included former Moraine Mayor Harold Johnson.
Moraine Airpark is the first, oldest and longest running seaplane base in the world.
The Wright Brothers began their hydroaeroplane (seaplane) experiments along the Miami River in Moraine and West Carrollton in 1912 and 1914 with over 100 flights.
Harold Johnson appeared with actor Richard Sanders flying his Moraine based Waco biplane in the comedy television series “WKRP in Cincinnati”.
The Moraine Airpark has trained thousands of pilots over the years, many who have become airplane pilots and military airmen.
Moraine has the second largest flight school in the State of Ohio.
Moraine was the site of the first female parachute stack during an airshow. They were called the “Falling Angels”.
The largest group of Waco biplanes in the world were based in Moraine. In the 1960’s they were called the “Glue Angels”.
Pilots Harold Johnson, Darrell Montgomery and Jimmy Dorsey brought back wing walking from the 1920’s. The performances lasted 13 years.
Bob Wagner tested the first Citabria aircraft on EDO floats on the Miami River in the early 1970’s. This popular sport plane lead the way with affordable float plane flying and aerobatics.
Many rare aircraft including one-of-a-kind aircraft have been based at Moraine including the Champion Lancer, many Waco’s, the Luscombe Phantom, the Riley Rocket Swept Tail Cessna 310 and many more.
The Waco Taperwing based in Moraine was featured in the 1988 movie, “Pancho Barns”.
In 1985, Moraine’s 4th of July Airshow was listed as the 3rd oldest airshow site in the world. The July 4th Moraine airshows lasted 30 years.
The world’s top airshow performers have danced the skies over Moraine over the years.