Two of the most infamous things Oshkosh, WI is known for is the origin of the Oshkosh B’Gosh clothing line and the EAA convention. We host a few other big-ish events like Country USA and Rock USA, but EAA is one of the most well-renowned events that draws thousands upon thousands of people from all over the country–and beyond US borders. The airport gets jam-packed with campers and rows and rows of personal planes. People from Oshkosh even rent out their homes and yards to visitors for extra cash and everyone in town grumbles about driving anywhere remotely near the EAA grounds. But they put on quite the show. The fly-in offers everything aircraft-related you could ever imagine.
We used to play the license plate game during EAA when we were younger. We’d drive through all the restaurant and hotel parking lots to try and find one license plate from every state. I’ve even seen Hawaii and Alaska plates!
This year, we bought a family membership to the EAA museum due to the shortage of any indoor places around here to take a child during the winter. I mean, even our McDonald’s doesn’t have a Playland anymore and the closest kid-friendly cafe just shut down. There’s nothing in this town for kids to do in winter. Nothing. Nada. However, we found that the EAA museum offers a really neat children’s discovery area complete with simulators, cockpits and all kinds of exciting stuff.
Now, this membership comes in really handy during the actual EAA convention. I decided to take Peanut to the EAA museum, right on the EAA grounds, to see if we could watch some of the live air shows. The air shows are really spectacular. Every day this week, locals will see all different kinds of planes do tricks in the air. There will be plane formations, smoke shows, parachute jumps, blimps, plane dives and all sorts of other cool things. This is really cool, even if you’re not a real airplane person.
Well, Peanut and I found a secret spot where we can really watch the airshow from front-row seats without having to pay admission to the grounds. And we even took a driving route in the back way that wasn’t flooded with traffic. Now, I’ve been on the grounds before. Living in Oshkosh, at one time or another, you end up working somewhere or other there. But to pay admission every year could really wipe out one’s entertainment budget. Now, with our secret spot, we get to watch the show for free. And no one else really came around the secret spot either. We had the place to ourselves! I’m sure this will become a tradition for Peanut and I each year going forward, now that we found this great spot.
We’re spending these last few weeks of summer vacation with as much excitement as we can. EAA presented another opportunity to do just that and it didn’t cost us anything!
How are you taking advantage of these last few moments of summer vacation?