November 11, 2004 - EAA's Tribute to Ultralight Pioneers is a new exhibit in the works at the EAA AirVenture Museum, highlighting the three decades-old ultralight movement that burst on the scene and grew up around EAA Oshkosh.
The exhibit will feature eight ultralights from the EAA collection, suspended from the museum's Restoration Center ceiling. They include the early Kiceniuk Icarus V from 1973; the Solar Riser (solar powered Easy Riser); an American Aerolights Double Eagle II; and an Antares MH 39 Flex Wing that belonged to the late Mike Jacober.
While EAA's Tribute to Ultralight Pioneers fulfills the museum's long-held plan for an ultralight display, funding for the program was kicked off by Jacober's family and friends in the wake of his tragic accident in June 2003. His widow, Jenny, donated the Antares, along with $2,000 in start-up money, to launch the exhibit.
This is the same Antares trike Jacober used to pilot the first ultralight over Mt. McKinley's 20,320-foot summit in 1993.
"We're very pleased to be able to work on a dedicated ultralight exhibit," said EAA Museum Director Adam Smith. "When people think of museums and aircraft, they often don't think of ultralights because they are positioned as being a modern thing. But we've got ultralights going back to the early 1970s, so it's now possible to gather some historical perspective on the ultralight movement. It's something we've been very eager to do here at Oshkosh because in many respects, the ultralight movement has grown up around EAA Oshkosh."
Expanded information will be at visitors' fingertips through an interactive touch screen display. What's more, the on-screen presentation will be made available on the "virtual museum" at www.airventuremuseum.org.
Interactive touch screens, which EAA hopes to have throughout the facility someday, help convey the notion that aviation history, not just airplanes and artifacts, is about the people who built and flew the airplanes themselves.
"Ultralights is a great example," Smith added. "It's really about the people and the spirit that they bring to aviation, not how fast the airplane flew."
The Jacober family will conduct all fundraising for the exhibit. Donations may be mailed directly to EAA at the P.O. Box 3086, Oshkosh, WI, 54903. Please note that your gift is for the Mike Jacober/Ultralight Exhibit Fund.