Picture of Aircraft at the Air Zoo in Michigan

Air Zoo Blog

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What's Up at the Air Zoo?

(besides aircraft and space artifacts)

We always have fun and exciting things to share with you.  Please check back often for exhibit information and openings, event details, special Air Zoo visitors, educationand  program announcements and soooo much more!

Media contact:
Nikki Statler, Director of Marketing
nstatler@airzoo.org  |  269.350.2811

July Exhibit & Collections Update

Cosmic Contemplations  Long before we had the technology to picture space, we rendered our own versions of it. For example, in the 1940s and ‘50s, artists blended science fact with science fiction to interpret the Moon, as seen in Chesley Bonestell’s 1957 Lunar Landscape mural section. Learn more about how the images that form our vibrant new wallpaper came to be and explore the stories of the people and imaging technologies that help us photograph space... Read More
Posted by Nikki Statler at Thursday, Jun 30, 2022
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New Paintings at the Air Zoo - "Over Europe" by Matt Milkowski

The Air Zoo acquired three new paintings at the end of 2021, from a Chicago Artist, Matt Milkwoski. Check out Over Europe on display in the Flight Innovation Canter-World War II Wing.  Matt Milkowski Over Europe oil on canvas Artist Statement Through a window, a B-17 crewman would have seen bombers gently swaying one way or another. This would occur as the hundreds of planes lumbered into position to assemble their intricate box formations. At times, collisions occurred.... Read More
Posted by Nikki Statler at Monday, May 30, 2022
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Oceans to Astronauts

May 6, 2022  Portage, MI  – Opportunity abounds at the Air Zoo this month as scientist and innovator, Adle Luta, joins the Air Zoo team, Thursday, May 12 th , to inspire young math and science lovers to dream big and work hard, while sharing stories of inspiration and perseverance with learners of all ages.     Join friends and neighbors for a night of storytelling involving human spaceflight and how Adele Luta’s work, including... Read More
at Friday, May 6, 2022
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New Exhibit Remembers Air Zoo Co-Founder

Get to know our co-founder, Preston “Pete” Parish in our new, inhouse exhibition Planes, Principles, & Positivity: Remembering Pete Parish now on display.  Follow Pete’s entrance into the U.S. Marines with his college best friend, Pete Richards. Learn more about Pete’s military career, including his service at Guadalcanal and Peleliu during World War II. See the model of the ship that claimed Pete’s best friend’s life, sand from Peleliu, and an... Read More
at Friday, Apr 29, 2022
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2022 Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame, and Science Innovation Hall of Fame Honorees Awarded at the Air Zoo

Michigan aerospace pioneers, students and the community met together to celebrate the Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame and the Science Innovation Hall of Fame last week. See the Event Program Book . The Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame enshrined the five members of the ‘Class of 2022’. The enshrinees were: Col. Eugene “Gene” Carolan - United States Army, Pilot CW4 Dennis “Doc” Hallada - United States Army, Pilot Dr. Christina Hammock Kock -... Read More
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2022 Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame, and Science Innovation Hall of Fame Honorees to be Awarded at the Air Zoo on Saturday, April 16th

Only 5 days left until the exciting return of the joint Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame and Science Innovation Hall of Fame Awards event, held annually at the Air Zoo.   Join Air Zoo staff, event sponsors, awardees, and guests for an evening of celebration and inspiration as they honor inductees and award winners. The event will be fun, light-hearted, and inspiring, dedicated to recognizing both the immense achievement of Michigan’s aerospace leaders, as well as our... Read More
Posted by Nikki Statler at Monday, Apr 11, 2022
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We’re Not Leaving until You See This Airplane!

In an interview with 2021 Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame (MAHOF) recipient Virgil Williams, we learned more about our beloved co-founder, Pete Parish. Virgil served as the Upjohn Company’s Chief Pilot for 35 years. For 25 of those years, Pete served as Virgil’s boss and, as Virgil said, “also a good friend.” In the 1950s, the Upjohn Company recognized the need for a corporate aircraft division. The company appointed pilots Pete Parish and Ted Parfet to give wings to... Read More
Posted by Nikki Statler at Thursday, Mar 31, 2022
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Suit Up for Women's History at the Air Zoo!

At the Air Zoo, celebrating Women’s History Month really *suits* us! That’s why it’s especially rewarding to share the story of superstar aerobatic champion, Patty Wagstaff, and her flight suit. Patty Wagstaff is a three-time U.S. National Aerobatic Champion—the first woman to earn the title. Patty’s flying passion soared when her father, a Japan Airlines captain, welcomed her to take the controls of his DC-6. Patty has represented America in Olympic-level... Read More
Posted by Nikki Statler at Tuesday, Mar 1, 2022
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Stitching Up Romance at the Tuskegee Institute

When America entered World War II (1939-1945) in 1941, the U.S. Army Air Corps (today’s U.S. Air Force) remained segregated. But the need for skilled pilots drove a wise decision that resulted in the Tuskegee Airmen: Black pilots who risked their lives for their country and helped crumble armed forces racial segregation. These pilots answered the recruitment call and trained at the new air base at Tuskegee, Alabama. They flew with the 99th Fighter Squadron and the 332nd Fighter Group in... Read More
Posted by Nikki Statler at Tuesday, Feb 1, 2022
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Collections department, plans for 2022

The Collections staff and volunteers have been working hard on the Guadalcanal Campaign Collection. Our volunteers just finished up inventorying and taking photographs of the 3D objects in the Guadalcanal Campaign collection. We will be working on changing some of the display cases in the Guadalcanal Campaign exhibit. We also recently received a fabulous collection from the family of Charles A. Buser, who was a Marine who fought on Guadalcanal and featured in the Guadalcanal Exhibit. (Photo is... Read More
Posted by Nikki Statler at Thursday, Dec 30, 2021
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Before They Were WASP, They Were CAP

Did you know that many Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP)—including Air Zoo Co-founder Sue Parish—first served as part of the Civil Air Patrol (CAP)? Approved by the United States Commerce, Navy, and War departments in 1941, the CAP recruited American civilian pilots eager to use their aviation skills for national defense. Men and women answered the call and volunteered in many ways. They provided surveillance, missing aircraft searches, forest patrols, and much more. Prior to... Read More
Posted by Nikki Statler at Thursday, Dec 30, 2021
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Air Zoo education team participates in Grand Rapids Griffins annual School Day Game

A UNIQUE, EDUCATIONAL FIELD TRIP EXPERIENCE The Air Zoo is excited to be joining the Grand Rapids Griffins annual School Day Game on  Wednesday, November 17, 2021 , presented by the Army National Guard. Every year, thousands of West Michigan students and educators head to Van Andel Arena for this unique and fun learning experience that features interactive exhibits and educational displays throughout the concourse and during the game. The educational exhibits, with a STEM focus for... Read More
Posted by Nikki Statler at Tuesday, Nov 2, 2021
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