The EAA’s annual summer rites of flight at its Oshkosh AirVenture fly-in are all about the sights and sounds of aviation. And for as long as it has been an event, some of the best photographers in the world have gathered there, long lenses in hand, to capture the glory of it all—the color, the motion, the faces, the explosion of excitement that is the world’s greatest aviation event.
Like every year, it’s impossible to select every photograph we’d like to feature, as our editors were sitting around the virtual table going over virtual slides—forgive the metaphor. We’ve been doing this since the days of Kodachrome—we kept on adding image after image to the stack. We needed shots of seaplanes, fighters, vintage planes, sport planes, good old GA standards, of course, but we also wanted fireworks and scale and, lastly but so importantly, people loving the greatest show on earth.
Well, at some point, we had to say “when,” and we’re delighted to be able to share with you this spectacular collection of images, some of which you might have seen, but which stand up, we’re certain, to seeing again and again. And a special thanks, too, to the EAA for its help with this project.
So here are the sights of AirVentures past. Yes, this year is different, as you know, because there will be no AirVenture. Sure, people are sad about that, but something unexpected has happened, too. People have started gearing up for AirVenture 2021. Yes, it’s 13 months away still, so it sounds improbable, but we’re totally getting fired up for it, too.
These photos won’t make Oshkosh 2021 come any faster, but they’ll definitely remind you of what we’re all missing.
Where the magic happens. Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, and the surrounding area, which transforms from a quiet mid-sized town to the craziest aviation locale on the planet for one week a year. Photo courtesy of EAA, Phil High