More Aircraft and People at This Year's AirVenture

If airshow attendance were an overall economic indicator, then it might be time to start reloading the 401k. At the approximate halfway point of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh (July 28-August 2), the association reports attendance is up by as much as 10%. The North 40 parking and camping areas are jammed, and incoming aircraft have been diverted to satellite airports during several time periods during the first part of the week, though departures continue to free up more space. And best of all, as of yesterday evening the show had been a safe one, with only a few groundloops. Visual estimates on foot traffic from exhibitors and AirVenture veterans support the upward trend. That news is consistent with attendance reports at air shows earlier this year in Friedrichschafen, Germany and the Sun 'n Fun show in Florida. The big draws this year include the Airbus A380, which arrived on Tuesday; and the Virgin Galactic WhiteKnightTwo (WW2), the redesigned second-generation mother ship for Virgin's commercial space travel venture. WW2 is on display at show center, and even conducted a demonstration flight.