Read the Latest News

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

SR-71 Spy-Posium Event - a HUGE success for all!

Did you make it to the SR-71 SPY-POSIUM?

For the first time ever, the Air Zoo opened the SR-71B’s cockpits for public viewing! Visitors got first-hand accounts of what makes the Blackbird tick - straight from the mouths of former SR-71 pilots and crew members.  We learned exciting facts about this one of a kind spyplane that has captured high-resolution images from over 80,000 feet and flown more than three times the speed of sound. Attendees enjoyed engaging panel discussions, participated in the informative Q&A sessions, viewed the open cockpits, and checked out specially displayed Blackbird artifacts! 

Fifteen SR-71 pilots and crew members spent countless hours with our visitors. These remarkable individuals were:  Stormy Boudreaux, David Burns, Robby Butterfield, Buz Carpenter, Chris Christensen, Jerry Glasser, Ed Hall, Floyd Jones, Stephen Justice, John Manzi, John Murphy, Mike Relja, Lewis Sulzle, BC Thomas, Ed Yeilding  

The event stretched from Thursday evening (October 4) through Monday morning (October 7)

For a recap of the Spy-Posium Weekend please see below. If you would like to see photos from the weekend please find our gallery on Facebook


Thursday, October 3rd - Several crew members arrived on Thursday and spent the evening with Air Zoo Volunteers, Staff and family as a kick-off to what was sure to be an impressive weekend. 

Friday, October 4 | 9am-5pm - Cockpits were open to the public and former SR-71 crew members and pilots were on hand to talk to and educate groups of students who had many questions and enjoyed hearing the stories from our guests. 

Saturday, October 5 | 9am-5pm Artifacts and education stations as well as scheduled panel discussions and mini tours with former SR-71 crew members were available to visitors all day. The schedule was exciting and engaging. The evening boasted a ticketed fundraiser and was a tremondous success.

Educational Floor Show   9:40am  
Panel 1 with Q&A 
 |  10-11:30am   Moderated by Jerry Glasser; panel members: John Manzi, MIke Relja, and Ed Yeilding
360 Cockpit Discussion with Jerry Glasser and John Manzi 
 |  11:40-12:40pm  
Educational Floor Show 
 |  1pm
Panel 2 with Q&A 
|  1:30-3pm   Moderated by Buz Carpenter; panel members: Dave Burns, Steve Justice, and John Murphy
Photo Opportunity with Blackbird Crew Members!
 |  3-4pm

Special Event!
Blackbird Affair
 | 5:30-10pm Attendees selected from two tiers of ticketing - $250 Tier 1 tickets that guaranteed a seat in the SR-71B and Tier 2 tickets that were sold for $100 each. These Tier 2 guests had the opportunity to win a seat in the Blackbird through several evening raffles. 

Evening breakout sessions were a tremendous hit and were focused on four main topics:

Lockheed Skunk Works
Training in the 956
SR-71 Operations with Pilots and RSOs
Maintaining Stealth & Speed
 

Sunday, October 6 | 10am-5pm - We saw nearly 100 Air Zoo members bright and early as we opened with a special Air Zoo Members only hour from 9-10am. They had the chance to chat with our guests and view the cockpits before opening the doors to the general public.

Artifact and education stations, scheduled panel discussions and mini tours with former SR-71 crew members were booming with visitors all day. 

Educational Floor Show   10:30am 
Panel 3 with Q&A 
 |  11-12:30pm  Moderated by Story Boudreaux; panel members: Floyd Jones, John Manzi, and Mike Relja
360 Cockpit Discussion with Jerry Glasser and John Manzi
 |  12:40-1:40pm  
Educational Floor Show 
 |  2pm
Panel 4  with Q&A 
|  2:30-4pm   Moderated by BC Thomas; panel members: Robby Butterfield, Steve Justice, John Murphy, and Lew Sulzle

Posted by Nikki Statler at 12:24 PM
Share |

Come visit us.