One of the iconic general
aviation airplanes of the past half-century, the Piper Cherokee, will be
honored this summer at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, "The World’s
Greatest Aviation Celebration," at Wittman Regional Airport on July
The four-place, low-wing
airplane has been a staple at general aviation airports since its
introduction in 1960. The original design has undergone several
evolutions since that first year, but it remains a recognizable part of
the flight training and recreational flying world.
At AirVenture 2010, a mass
arrival of 50 aircraft will kick off the golden anniversary event, with
other activities and programs included for Cherokee owners and
enthusiasts throughout the week. All Piper Cherokee clubs and owners
groups are invited to participate in the activities.
"There are just a few
airplanes that are instantly recognizable as part of the flying
community at nearly every airport, and the Piper Cherokee is among
them," said Tom Poberezny, EAA president and AirVenture chairman.
"The design has been a part of aviation history for those learning
to fly, enjoying the freedom of flight or using an aircraft as part of
their business. In addition, more than 250,000 young people have been
flown in Cherokees as part of EAA’s Young Eagles program. With that
superb legacy, we are eager to give all the Cherokee aircraft and
enthusiasts a warm welcome at Oshkosh next summer."
The historic mass arrival of
Cherokees on Friday, July 23, just before AirVenture’s opening day, is
being organized by the Cherokees2Osh group and has already filled its
maximum of 50 aircraft. All Cherokee owners and pilots are welcome to
arrive at Oshkosh independently, however, and participate in all the
other festivities. More information on the group and other activities is
available at the group’s website at www.cherokees2osh.com.
The Cherokee received its
type certificate from the Federal Aviation Administration in 1960 and
was first shipped to the marketplace in 1961. More than 30,000 Cherokees
and their direct descendants, the Piper Warrior and Arrow, have been
built over the past 50 years.
"There’s no better
place to bring together the greatest number of Cherokees for the
airplanes’ 50th anniversary than Oshkosh," said Terry Hocking of
Nashwauk, Minn., who is a lead organizer of the celebration. "The
Cherokee has been an important part of the aviation community for the
past 50 years, so we’re looking forward a great reunion of aircraft
and people at AirVenture in 2010."
Any additional highlights
and activities during the Cherokee 50th anniversary will be announced as
they are finalized by EAA.