The governor’s signed a proclamation declaring this month the kickoff for “Centennial of Flight,” a whole year of events commemorating the work of Wilbur and Orville Wright. Roy Criss is Aviation Marketing Manager for the state transportation department. He says December 17 is the 99th anniversary of the Wright Brothers’ first successful heavier-than-air powered flight, and there’s a year-long celebration of 100 years of flight. Communities around the country will stage their own fly-ins, airshows and special events and the DOT’s Aviation arm will also have a hand in some. In July, Cedar Rapids will host “Fly Iowa,” the state’s premier aviation event and it will feature many activities and educational features that commemorate the centennial of flight. Criss says the DOT’s also helping create a unique display. They’re partnering with ISU’s Aerospace department, where students will build a half-scale model of that pioneering craft, the Wright Flyer, which will be on display next year at the Iowa State Fair. Iowa has an estimated six-thousand pilots flying for pleasure, passenger and cargo hauling, crop-dusting, surveying, airlines and other aviation business.
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