The golden age of aviation will be showcased this week in Mason City and Des Moines as vintage aircraft owners re-create the National Air Tour, originally held between 1925 and 1931. The planes are making a 17-day, four-thousand-mile journey starting in Dearborn, Michigan, circling the eastern half of the country before coming back to their starting point. Tour organizer Greg Herrick, a Twin Cities airplane collector, says the original tours proved to the public that passenger flights were safe and practical. Aviation had been dominated by the military and stunt pilots and not though of as something for the public. Herrick says people will be able to get an up close look at the rare planes. He says people will be able to see the original airplanes that were on the tour. Herrick says the event is free to everyone, and you may even get to live a little bit of history by riding in one of the vintage planes.The planes will leave the Twin Cities on Thursday, heading for a 9 AM arrival in Mason City, departing at 10 AM for a 10:45-12:45 stay at the Des Moines International Airport, then heading for Kansas City. For more information, consult the website at “www.nationalairtour.org”.
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