Edmonton

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This was originally posted on 10 July 2015, and because I lost all of my old content, I am reposting it. In my last attempt at a blog, I tried for part aviation, part travel, but now I’ll leave the travel stuff to twitter and my personal facebook. My plan this year is to stick to aviation related posts. The only two aviation posts that I managed to salvage are this one and one about the Cochrane Pond Hawker Hurricane, which I will also repost. There are a few posts from my first blog on blogspot which I will also eventually repost here. Sadly, I have lost any and all comments from this blog, including a wonderfully detailed one about Le oiseau blanc. I hope it is somewhere in my emails, but I don’t think so.

Anyway, we return to the Alberta Aviation Museum!

The Boeing IM-99B BOMARC missile outside the hangar that houses the Alberta Aviation Museum. Photo by author.

The Boeing IM-99B BOMARC missile outside the hangar that houses the Alberta Aviation Museum. Photo by author.

First posted on 10 July 2015 on planecrashgirl.ca

This museum has been in the news lately because they are in the process of acquiring a Lancaster bomber. When I was there in May, it seemed to be what was on everyone’s mind; what model, where it will be housed, what work will need to be done on it… It was all very exciting.

"Such is the way to the stars" written (also in Latin) outside the museum. Photo by author.

“Such is the way to the stars” written (also in Latin) outside the museum. Photo by author.

The passion of everyone involved at this museum shows, from our friendly greeting to an impromptu tour by one of the volunteers who didn’t even bother to finish his pre-shift coffee before showing us around. I have been to a couple of aviation museums, and I love seeing how each one shows the history and story of aviation. The Alberta Aviation Museum did not disappoint. Actually, I wasn’t sure if I was even going to get in! I had been trying to get to the museum throughout my holiday, and on the day I got back from Jasper, was dropped at the museum. Unfortunately, it was closed for a private event! But no worries, the next day a whole crew of us decided to go together and earlier in the day so we could spend as much time as we wanted exploring the museum.

Inside the Norseman. Photo by Shannon K. Green.

Inside the Norseman. Photo by Shannon K. Green.

The group consisted of five adults of varying backgrounds, and two young children, and we all enjoyed ourselves. The kids particularly enjoyed the strollers shaped like airplanes, and I enjoyed encouraging airplane noises while we explored the museum.

One also loved the "pretty lady" nose art. Not bad for 2 years old! (He also enjoyed the Disney nose art).

One also loved the “pretty lady” nose art. Not bad for 2 years old! (He also enjoyed the Disney nose art).

A cross-section of an engine. This was fascinating to see, and they hope to have it as part of the permanent exhibit soon. Photo by author.

A cross-section of an engine. This was fascinating to see, and they hope to have it as part of the permanent exhibit soon. Photo by author.

The Alberta Aviation Museum is located on the city airport property, which is now closed, in one of the hangars. This gives them a great deal of space to house a number of aircraft, plus space outside for some of their more modern features. The exhibits along the walls look at Alberta’s role in aviation and World War II. Such highlights include information about the first heavier than air flight in Canada, famous Albertan aviators such as Wilfried Reid “Wop” May, and Alberta’s role in Bomber Command. I’ll be honest, there was a lot of information, too much for one visit, so I’ll have to go back the next time I’m in Edmonton.

It was nice to see some of these aircraft whole. That certainly doesn't happen on my archaeological sites. Photo by author.

It was nice to see some of these aircraft whole. That certainly doesn’t happen on my archaeological sites. Photo by author.

De Havilland Tiger Moth

De Havilland Tiger Moth

Honestly, I had a great time in Edmonton, but this museum was a highlight. The staff were friendly and informative, and spent a little extra time with me when I told them what I do. It was wonderful to see the restoration area, especially the Ventura they are currently working on. Hopefully one day we’ll be able to restore the Ventura that crashed near Benton as they are restoring their Ventura. Some day it would be nice to open an aviation museum in St. John’s to compliment those scattered around Newfoundland and Labrador, and I certainly gathered a few ideas from my visit to the Alberta Aviation Museum. Can’t wait to get back!

The Ventura being restored. Photo by author.

The Ventura being restored. Photo by author.

 

 

 

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