EAA AirVenture Oshkosh - The World's Greatest Aviation Celebration

 for Sat, Aug 2, 2008

Index of all articles from
EAA AirVenture Today


Photo Gallery
EAA Radio

EAA AirVenture Today

EAA AirVenture Today is published by the Experimental Aircraft Association for EAA AirVenture from July 27 - August 3. It is distributed free on the convention grounds as well as other locations in Oshkosh and surrounding communities. Stories and photos are copyrighted 2008 by EAA AirVenture Today and EAA. Reproduction by any means is prohibited without written consent.


Advertising information

The official daily newspaper of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh

Volume 9, Number 7 August 2, 2008     

Klapmeier brothers get keys to 'aviation's city'

Alan (left) and Dale Klapmeier accept the Key to the City from Oshkosh Mayor Frank Tower.

Alan and Dale Klapmeier, who in 24 years developed Cirrus Design Corporation into one of the top general aviation aircraft manufacturers in the world, received Oshkosh's Key to the City award during the annual Mayor's Breakfast held Friday morning on the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh campus. Oshkosh Mayor Frank Tower presented the award before a large crowd at the Kolf Sports Center.

"In the 32 years that I've been coming here, for at least one week a year, this city opens their arms to the people of EAA who come from all over the world," Dale said in accepting the award. "And every one of us feels welcome. We're happy to be a part of this community that we've all fallen in love with. We're very honored for this; thank you."

Alan, whose first encounters with Oshkosh were as a college student at nearby Ripon, added, "What a wonderful community this is. Oshkosh means aviation all over the world. When people in aviation say Oshkosh, they mean EAA, worldwide. What Paul [Poberezny] and his family, all the volunteers and all the organizations, have created is really truly a special organization that very obviously has changed our lives.

"It really is a wonderful honor for us to receive this award, because we think of Oshkosh as a symbol for what aviation has been and what aviation will be, so thank you, Oshkosh."

Self-described "airport kids," the brothers built and restored aircraft in their family's dairy barn in Baraboo, Wisconsin. They rebuilt a broken-down 1960 Champion 7GC and assembled several kit planes. Alan graduated from Ripon College with degrees in physics and economics, while Dale earned business administration and economics degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

Following college, Alan, Dale, and Alan's college roommate, Jeff Viken, formed Cirrus with their first design, a futuristic homebuilt pusher called the VK-30. EAAers first saw the airplane on static display at the 1987 Oshkosh convention and fly-in. Subsequent designs included the SR20, which was introduced at Oshkosh in 1994 and received its type certificate in 1998; the SR22, certificated in 2000 and currently the largest-selling single GA aircraft type; plus two planes first seen here last year, the SRS light-sport aircraft and the Cirrus Vision SJ50 personal jet.

In 2005, Cirrus donated the first production prototype VK-30, serial number 005, to the EAA AirVenture Museum.
The Key to the City award was created by EAA and the city of Oshkosh to honor distinguished personalities for contributions to the promotion and support of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh and the aviation community. A unique marble and glass Key to the City sculpture was specially designed for the occasion, and the recipients' names are inscribed on a permanent plaque that hangs in City Hall.

FUTURE AIRVENTURE DATES: 2014: July 28-Aug. 3; 2015: July 20-26; 2016: July 25-31; 2017: July 24-30
Copyright © 2014 EAA, Inc.
All content, logos, pictures, and videos are the property of the EAA, Inc.
EAA Aviation Center, 3000 Poberezny Road, Oshkosh, WI 54902
If you have any comments or questions contact webmaster@eaa.org.
Disclaimer/Privacy Policy