Antique Aircraft Association Hosts Fly-In in Blakesburg

The grass strip and surrounding fields offer a lot of camping, and a great view of the airplanes that may be in attendance—like Clay Adams’ 1929 Travel Air E-4000. Antique Airplane Association/G.R. Dennis Price

The Antique Airplane Association hosts its annual fly-in traditionally during the week and weekend leading up to Labor Day.

While last year’s event was scrubbed, the folks at AAA plan to make up for that loss in 2021, with activities from September 1 to 6.

The fly-in takes place at Antique Airfield (IA27), nearest to Blakesburg, Iowa, and not too far from Ottumwa. It’s a private-use strip where you typically need permission to land, but your registration allows for that during the fly-in.

And that’s really the best way to experience Blakesburg.

Pilots have a choice of camping at several areas around the field—or staying in a local motel—but the best bet is to pitch a tent on site unless you’re totally opposed to that much nature.

Food is catered in by the local grocery chain (Hy-Vee), and the Pilot’s Pub opens up once the sun goes down.

But the big attraction? The wide range of unique and rare vintage aircraft that fly in for the week.

Here’s a first-timer’s flight into Blakesburg to ensure you’re oriented to the procedures in use before you go. Fuel service is provided on the field during the event by Classic Aviation—check the hours of availability before you make your plans.

Pre-registration can still be made on the website up through this week. You’ll need to be a member to attend—for various insurance reasons—but that’s easily completed with your registration on-site or in advance.

Based in Maryland, Julie is an editor, aviation educator, and author. She holds an airline transport pilot certificate with Douglas DC-3 and CE510 (Citation Mustang) type ratings. She's a CFI/CFII since 1993, specializing in advanced aircraft and flight instructor development. Follow Julie on Twitter @julieinthesky.

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