March 25, 2023

Camp 168.. Me and Dr. Don

     Another Splash In is in the books, and this was another unique chapter. Typically Bruce and Mary Ann drive their coach in and I bring mine and park next to them in the Campground area, while others fly in and camp along the runway.

     This year, I flew in and pitched my tent, and others like Jay Pratt and Carol along with Danny King drove their recreational vehicles and parked in the RV park.

     I camp with a single person tiny tent. It easily fits in the RV-8. My next door neighbor was Don Christiansen who flew his Rans S-21 and whose tent dwarfed mine . Don is a much more experienced camper than I am.
Friday night’s dinner was a cajun special prepared by Air Salvage’s Lucky Larouque and his family. He has done this in years past and it is the reason many of us fly in on Friday.


     A group of aviation students and instructors from Oklahoma flew in and stayed in the duplexes that line the runway. It was a kind of school “Field” Trip.

     Most planes arrived Saturday Morning and by mid afternoon there were airplanes that lined the south side of the runway as well as the several on the north side. A variety of aircraft that attend, from certified, big tire, tailwheel and homebuilts.

     The first big cold front of the Fall along with serious rain was rolling in on Saturday night which chased most of us tent campers out on Saturday afternoon. That meant we missed the Saturday night dinner extravaganza. The meal is in the back dining room in the restaurant and is a delicious Octoberfest style German feast. I’m regretted missing it this year.

     Bruce and Mary Ann made the trip on Sat afternoon and stayed for the Saturday night dinner. It was nice catching up with them and their Smiley Creek tales.

Carbon Cub

But this is not just another fly-in with overnight camping. On Saturday the FAAST Safety team hosts four safety seminars at the lodge in the middle of RV campgrounds. The topics change every year except for the last seminar which is Lucky talking aircraft maintenance. That seminar is very popular.

Piper Pacer

On Sunday morning EAA Chapter 323, from Sherman, prepares an excellent pancake breakfast for those that camp out Saturday night. There are also some that fly in early on Sunday just for the pancake breakfast.

     Started by Rich Worstel to combine his love of boats with the love of airplanes, this year was the 21st annual event. Rich is not with us anymore but his son, Chris, is continuing the tradition and the event would not be what it is without his generosity.

Aviat Husky

EAA 323 from Sherman also assisted the entire weekend and were available to shuttle attendees to the various locations around the grounds.

     I have said it a hundred times, “This is my favorite fly in of the year!” I plan to start another chapter next year. Maybe in the coach……Maybe in a tent. Stay tuned.