Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Big Week of UN Visitors

Each year, the opening session of the United Nations General Assembly brings many of the world's leaders to New York City. The week is also a special treat for local area aviation photographers, as a collection of aircraft rarely seen in the area gather at Kennedy Airport. Kuwaiti government A310 on approach to JFK. Kuwaiti A310

One of the highlights of the week - a Russian Il-96, the first time I've gotten a good photo of one of these. Russian Il-96

This Boeing 727 brought the South African delegation.

When the President visits, the Secret Service brings in a variety of equipment and vehicles to support the trip. Here, an Air Force C-17, used to carry that gear, departs JFK.

Finally, the big VC-25 arrives as "Air Force 1". Air Force 1 passes the JFK tower on landing.

And a short time later departs again, as "SAM 28", after dropping off the President.

But my catch of the year as far as UN traffic is concerned...a Colombian Air Force 767 Air Refueling Tanker departs LaGuardia Airport heading back home with that country's delegation.

It's only the second time that tanker has been in New York. A huge thank you to my friend Ron for alerting me to it.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Labor Day at the Museum

After days of packing everything away to weather Hurricane Irene, it was a rush to get things back to normal at the American Airpower Museum in time for Labor Day weekend.

Washing the Grumman Avenger.

The museum celebrated the Centennial of Naval Aviation this weekend, with our Corsair and Avenger seeing action.

One of the highlights for me - getting a flight in the museum's C-47.

Jim Vocell, museum VP of Operations and Chief Pilot, was at the controls up front.

It wasn't just a joyride, however. The flight was part of the museum's D-Day Experience, where patrons get a taste of what it was like for the paratroopers who dropped into Normandy on June 6, 1944.

We also had a tribute to the Tuskegee Airmen, including a "Missing Man" formation flyover to honor Lt. Bill Wheeler, who passed in June.

As always, there was plenty of flying to be seen. Chris Baranaskas and Glamorous Gal joined us...

After wrapping up the C-47 flights, Jim Vocell displayed his versatility, piloting the museum's B-25 and F4U Corsair.