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The Experimenal Aircraft Association ("EAA") annually hosts Airventure at its  Oshkosh, Wisconsin, headquarters.  Airventure is an amazing amalgam of all things aviation, and a "must see" event.  In 1994, Airventure observed the 25th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.  As part of the recognition, Apollo mission astronauts were invited.

Saturday was sunny and hot when our family attended Airventure in 1994.  At a drinking fountain, we found ourselves  standing in line with Wally Schirra, who was chatting  with Buzz Aldrin.  Frank Borman and Mike Collins amicably walked by.  Unbeknownst to us, the gentlemen were assembling for a press conference.

Taking a rest from escorting the family around Airventure, we took shade in a nearby pavilion.  Sitting down, we quickly realized the pavilion would be the press conference venue.  Needless to say, we stayed.

The press conference was amazing as the astronauts fielded a myriad of questions, many contrasting space flight with exhileration as a fixed wing test pilot, or with being in combat.  As well, views on the next steps for exploring space were readily given.  Our photos taken at the conference are grainy, befitting an inexpensive camera.  However, they capture an instant of that once in a lifetime setting for us.  (At one time, EAA sold copies of the astronaut formal meeting held later that day.  I am uncertain whether a recording is available of the press conference).  Click on the photos below to view the assembled Apollo astronauts.

Later that day, headed to the car, we happened across Burt Rutan holding an impromptu session discussing flight attributes of a Scaled Composite aircraft while sitting in the shade under a plane's wing.  A fascinating happenstance for us in a day we will never forget.

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