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Fossett's Capsule On Display At EAA AirVenture Museum Through August 30

Last Chance to See History Up Close

August 7, 2002 - The public has until Friday, August 30, to get an up-close look at the Spirit of Freedom balloon capsule that EAA member Steve Fossett called home for 14 days during his unprecedented solo flight around the world earlier this summer. On Saturday, August 31, the history-making capsule will be packed up and carted off to the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum (NASM) in Washington, D.C., where it will assume its place of honor between two other icons of aviation history: Gen. Chuck Yeager’s Bell X-1 and Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis.

The capsule was delivered via FedEx to Oshkosh just in time for EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2002. Thousands of attendees saw the bright yellow pod during the convention.

“There has been a lot of interest in the capsule from the public, and we are now in a genuine once-in-a-lifetime situation,” said EAA AirVenture Museum Director Adam Smith. “Once hung at NASM, you won’t be able to see inside, so this is the only chance left for people to see it like this.”

A member of EAA’s President’s Council, Fossett called EAA after he landed in Australia on July 4 to offer the capsule for display at the 50th EAA convention. Bud Light, the Spirit of Freedom’s sponsor, also funded the capsule’s transport from Brisbane, Australia, to Sydney to Los Angeles to Colorado and finally, Oshkosh on July 21.

“We are very grateful to Steve and are very proud to have the balloon capsule in our museum,” said Smith.

EAA AirVenture Museum is located at the intersection of U.S. Highway 41 and State Highway 44. Doors are open from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday, and from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sundays.

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