Greetings from The Aero Experience Team


The Aero Experience is a celebration of Midwest aviation and aerospace achievement. We invite you to join us as we explore the treasures of Midwest aviation through first-hand experiences. Our contributors take turns flying lead, and we are always looking for new destinations. Check in with The Aero Experience frequently to see where we will land today, and then go out and have your own aero experiences!

Blue skies,

Carmelo Turdo, Mark Nankivil and Fred Harl - The Aero Experience Team

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

First Annual TBM Gathering Offers Day of Flying Fun for All

By Carmelo Turdo
Brad Deckert
By Leo Cachat
Saturday's free public TBM Gathering event at Illinois Valley Regional Airport provided a day of flying fun for visiting aviation buffs and the general public who attended by the thousands.  Event organizer, Brad Deckert, with the able assistance from the airport and warbird communities, brought together a large number of warbirds that included nine flying TBM Avengers, including his own.  Formation flights by T-6 Texan primary trainers, T-33 jet trainers, P-51 Mustangs and other warbirds added to the excitement throughout the day.  Visitors could experience flight as well by purchasing rides in an R-44 helicopter, T-6 Texan or the Missouri Commemorative Air Force TBM-3E Avenger.  The airport remained operational, accepting local and fly-in traffic that added variety to the aviation celebration unfolding before our eyes.

The Aero Experience team was there to bring the event to our audience and to thank the organizers for sharing their love of aviation with us.   We present here some additional coverage of Saturday's activities, including some of our favorite photos showing some dramatic views and the human interaction we saw during the day.  Special thanks to everyone who made the event possible, and we hope that there will be many more TBM Gatherings in the future.

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