Kudos to everyone and anyone involved with the Camdenton Airshow Saturday.
Mother Nature couldn't have given us a better day, especially after a week of questionable weather that finally slipped away late Friday afternoon just in time for the KC Flight Formation to buzz the Camdenton and Eldon football games.
The Camdenton show was a "first" for me. I've been around airplanes over the years through assignments, photo shoots, aircraft events and hearing my father re-tell his tales of thumping the Japanese in the South Pacific as a pilot of an A-20. Yet, the Airshow was literally an up-close-and-personal experience for not only me but for thousands of spectators.
Being able to stand next to, to touch, to look inside and even to walk inside airplanes that led the United States' charge in World War II, in Vietnam and in other conflicts was mesmerizing. It's was a thrill to watch the P-51 Mustang buzz the Camdenton Airport only a few feet off the ground; to watch the gunship Douglas AC-47 lumber around the lake; and then to watch the youngsters defy gravity and death in their stunt biplanes.
A common theme throughout the day was saluting our military. The old boys were given rides (for a fee, of course) in aircraft they either serviced, flew or saw daily during their tenure serving our country. There were American flags flying everywhere, pilots wore the colors on their sleeve and even the KC Flight Formation let loose trailers of red, white and blue smoke.
It was a proud day to be an American.
Traffic flow into the paid parking area was somewhat of a challenge late morning Saturday. We crawled along Highway 5 for half an hour before handing over our $5 and parking a quarter mile from the excitement.
There were plenty of food vendors and plenty of porta potties (can I say that?), and only a tolerable few crying children.
It was a good day to be alive — and an American.