Ups and Downs in Grand Haven
Grand Haven has it all. They have a big clean, sandy beach. They have a fine indoor show. They have a great line-up of multi-line performers. They have open space for lots of folks to enjoy. And they have a huge field marked off for the show kites. The crowd seems to really appreciate us. Even the beach house I've been sharing for the past ten years has been updated!
That's the organizer, Steve Negen of Mackinaw Kites, hanging with Lee Sedgewick. The photo must have been taken Sunday since they are both smiling.
Seems like lately, Grand Haven has offered one good day and one bad one. Last year, Saturday was foggy with no wind. This year, the breeze slipped over the dunes and tumbled onto the beach. Large kites drifted in different directions or wrapped around each other and tumbled to the ground. It was hard, physical, challenging flying. And just when you thought it couldn't get better, the rain started....
That was Saturday. Sunday was clear blue skies and perfect winds.
On the demo field, Chicago Fire, the Windjammers, and IQuad reigned with added performances by Lee, Sam Ritter, Dave Bush, and Fire and Ice. A large crowd ringed the field and responded well to each flier. That's largely due to the excellent announcing by Ann Vondriska.
I swear, next year I'm gonna take a couple of sport kites instead of 200 pounds of show gear. I'll fly for ten minutes every two hours and get a big round of applause. (Click here.) I'll be close to lunch, shade, and water. And when the event is over, I'll pack up and be sipping a beer ten minutes later.
Instead, the announcer thanks the public, the boundaries stakes are collected by volunteers, and an hour later, we're still out there packing, watching for kids in the lines, and hoping our bags aren't stolen.
OK -- whining over!!
Sunday was the best day of flying I've enjoyed this year. Perfect winds, blue skies, and the announcers even sent one of the guest performer's pizzas over for us! As time went on, we just kept putting more and more stuff up. Al Sparling, Darryl Waters, Jason and Chaelee Madison, and Chad Macy all worked hard to make sure there was a big, impressive, and colorful backdrop to draw people into the park and augment the show on the main field.
We unveiled the new Chameleon kites from Sonja and Dirk Kruger. Fliers all loved them! Check the box below if you like them too.
The eyeball art was made by Fred and Donna Taylor of Lake Erie, Ontario. They call it the "optical-pile"
Saturday we gathered at the Negen's for a friendly flier social. And then Sunday we had dinner at the beach house, courtesy of Annie Ritter. I retired early in preparation for a 3 am airport departure. But the thunder storm we'd been expecting all day arrived and kept everyone awake!
I'm home now -- for a few days - and then off to Wildwood. Hope that storm isn't moving East!
We've been tweaking the new Chameleon for nearly a year and are darned pleased with the result. A gaping mouth, lizard eyes, and a fanciful ridge-back are all interesting. But the curled tail is spectacular! And the colors shimmer in the sun and seem to change before your eyes.
Choose a warm, cool, or rainbow Chameleon The size is about 12 feet long (unless you uncurl the tail!).
Each piece is $450. Order before June 5th and we'll take off 20% if you mention the Update.
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