Take Flight Day at Oz Library

Kevin Gray

Rockets zoomed high and far or zipped up – like a pop-up fly – and fell, an airplane circled, dipped and looped and hot air balloons lifted off silently in the Osawatomie City Auditorium last Wednesday at the Osawatomie Public Library’s Take Flight Day as part of the Spring Break activities hosted by Elizabeth Trigg, library director, and her staff.

A radio-controlled airplane made of foam flew to the ceiling and down again, while being controlled by John Rayne from Paola. “The foam is bendable, so it bounces when it crashes. It’s also a good plane to use to learn with,” Rayne said.

Rayne said he was glad the demonstration was held inside the auditorium because of the strong winds outside. “The plane can go as high as I can see it and higher, but it is hard to fly in the wind. It is light weight. The plane cost about $60 and the controls about $100,” Rayne said.

Weekends, Rayne said, are spent at Hillsdale Lake, where he and other enthusiasts have a site for this purpose. “We’re at Hillsdale Lake just about every Saturday and Sunday on the dry side of the lake. It’s a nice field with good parking. Everybody is welcome,” he said.

When asked about what areas of science building planes teaches, he said quite a few. “There’s electricity, physics and aerodynamics. Plus, it’s fun. I’ve built 10 planes and used them for aerial combat missions. We have aerial battles, but because of the foam design, there’s not much damage,” Rayne said.

Hot air balloons floated high above young and excited faces with the guidance of Osawatomie High School art teacher Patty Trull. “I’ve never done this before, so we’ll all be learning together,” Trull said about what would become tissue paper balloons standing 4 feet tall.

She said hot air balloons are very colorful. “You’ve probably seen them floating by overhead with their bright colors. This was one of the first forms of manned flight,” she said.

Once the children were divided into groups with an adult, Trull explained how to use patterns to cut out “gores,” or the panels, and how to glue them together. Then, with a hair dryer for the hot air supply and tape for unexpected holes, the balloons lifted off. “This is why we use tissue paper,” Trull said, “because it’s light.”

The afternoon’s finale came with paper rockets which Trigg demonstrated how to make. “After wrapping a strip of construction paper around this plastic pipe, the secret to a good rocket is tape. Lots and lots of tape to prevent air from escaping! The top of the rocket is called the nose cone and the bottom is where the tail fins, the guidance part, will go,” Trigg said.

With Trigg operating an air compressor, Trigg allowed each child to mount their rocket for liftoff. “If you haven’t used enough tape, your rocket won’t go very far. Or if it is wrapped too tight, it might not take off at all,” she said. Many of the rockets flew the length of the auditorium.

During the Osawatomie spring break, Trigg scheduled four activity-filled afternoons and a couple designed to reach into the early evenings. Movie marathon day started the fun on Tuesday with movies running continuously from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Take Flight day was Tuesday. Toddler Time stories, dancing and a craft ran in the morning and were followed by Scrapbooking for Teens in the afternoon. Friday began with Story Hour in the morning and Bored Games Day brought families in to play, as Trigg said, “…good, old-fashioned board games”.




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Posted by admin on Mar 30 2011. Filed under News and Updates, Photo Galleries. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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