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National World War II “Wings of Freedom Tour” Landing In Kearney | Rural Radio Network

National World War II “Wings of Freedom Tour” Landing In Kearney

As part of a 110-city Nationwide journey, the Wings of Freedom Tour will be on display at the Kearney Municipal Airport from Monday, July 17th, to Wednesday, July 19th, bringing with it World War II Vintage aircraft including the Boeing B-17 “Flying Fortress”, the Consolidated B-24 “Liberator”, a B-25 “Mitchell”, and North American P-51 Mustang .

According to Hunter Chaney, Director of Marketing for the Collings Foundation, this is a rare opportunity to visit, explore, and learn more about these unique and rare treasures of aviation history.

The B-17 is one of only 8 in flying condition in the United States, the B-24J is the sole remaining example of its type flying in the World, the B-25 is best known for being used in the daring Doolittle raid, and the P-51 Mustang was just awarded Grand Champion for restoration at EAA Oshkosh AirVenture.

Visitors are invited to explore the aircraft inside and out – $15 for adults and $5 for children under 12 is requested for access to up-close viewing and tours through the inside of the aircraft. Discounted rates for school groups. Visitors may also experience the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to actually take a 30-minute flight aboard these rare aircraft.

B-25 flights are $400 per person. Flights on either the B-17 or B-24 are $450 per person. Visitors can also get some “stick time” in the P-51 Mustang.  Flight training is $2,200 for a half hour and $3,200 for a full hour.

Hours of ground tours and display are: 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM on Monday, July 17th; 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Tuesday, July 18th and 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM on Wednesday, July 19th. The 30-minute flight experiences are normally scheduled before and after the ground tour times above.

For reservations and information on flight experiences call 800-568-8924.

The Wings of Freedom Tour travels the nation as a flying tribute to the flight crews who flew them, the ground crews who maintained them, the workers who built them, the soldiers, sailors and airmen they helped protect; and the citizens and families that share the freedom that they helped preserve.

The B-17, B-25 & B-24 were the backbone of the American effort during the war from 1942 to 1945 and were famous for their ability to sustain damage and still accomplish the mission. Despite the risks of anti-aircraft fire, attacking enemy fighters, and the harrowing environment of sub-zero temperatures, many B-17s and B-24s safely brought their crews home. The P-51 Mustang was affectionately known as the bombers “Little Friend” – saving countless crews from attacking axis fighters.

After the war, many aircraft were scrapped for their raw aluminum to rebuild a nation in post-war prosperity and therefore very few were spared. The rarity of the B-17, B-25, B-24 & P-51, and their importance to telling the story of World War II, is why the Collings Foundation continues to fly and display the aircraft nationwide. For aviation enthusiasts, the tour provides opportunity for the museum to come to the visitor.

Airplane in Flight. Courtesy of the Collings Foundation

The Collings Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit educational foundation devoted to organizing “living history” events that allows people to learn more about their heritage and history through direct participation. The Nationwide Wings of Freedom Tour  is celebrating its 28th year and visits an average of 110 cities in over 35 states annually. Since its start, tens of millions of people have seen the B-17, B-24 & P-51 display at locations everywhere.

Visitors can find out more by visiting their website at www.collingsfoundation.org.

For further information e-mail Hunter Chaney, Director of Marketing: hchaney@collingsfoundation.org or 800-568-8924.

 

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