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17th annual ‘Gathering of Giants’ this weekend

By Staff | Mar 19, 2011

The 17th annual Gathering of the Giants airshow, featuring the aerobatics of radio controlled aircrafts, will be held this weekend at the Cape Coral R/Seahawks Park.
R/Seahawks President Ed Gamils said the annual air show began because the club members wanted to say thank you to the city of Cape Coral Parks and Recreation Department for allowing them to use the facility. The show has been put on primarily for the people of Cape Coral.
“I want to bring emphasis to the parks department,” he said. “I want them to realize that the parks department is doing good for the city.”
The air show is hoping to draw between 50-75 pilots from all walks of life for this weekend’s show. Gamils said they have pilots coming in from various parts of Florida, Georgia and North Carolina.
Since the pilots are traveling from out of town, he said it brings business to the city because they stay in hotels and dine out at restaurants.
The pilots will be flying models of World War I planes, stunt planes, modern and fighter jets, along with Mac Hodge’s 22-foot wing span B-29 and the airborne launch of the X-1 Bell Rocket Ship.
“It is quite an air show,” Gamils said.
The flying will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday and conclude at 3 p.m. both days.
A candy drop will be held on both days for the children.
He said every year they have a big airplane that drops 20 pounds of candy. The candy is released from the plane before the kids are released to run and grab a handful.
“They love it,” Gamils said about the children. “It is really very popular.”
In addition, those who attend the event will have the opportunity to view the aircraft and ask the pilots, who will all be on hand, any questions they may have about the airplanes.
On Sunday a R/C airplane will be raffled off at 3 p.m. Food and drinks will be available during the show on both days.
Last year the event attracted more than 3,800 people, which is about average, according to Gamils. The show typically attracts between 3,000 and 4,000 people every year.
The Seahawks Club currently has 340 members. Gamils said he receives numerous calls from people who are planning on moving to Cape Coral to find out if there is a flying field in Cape Coral.
“I get these phone calls all the time,” he said.
The air show will be held at the Seahawks Air Park located at 1030 N.W. 28th St.