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Dec. 18, 2018: Aviation Trail, Inc.

Two popular museums of vintage warbird aircraft and a major UAS educational facility are welcomed to the tour.


These sites are now part of the Aviation Trail, a self-guided tour of selected sites that represent the region’s aviation heritage.

Butler County Warbirds, Inc.

Tri-State Warbird Museum:

The Tri-State Warbird Museum is Batavia, Ohio, the county seat of Clermont County. It features nine significant WWII aircraft, such as a P-51D Mustang, B-25 Mitchell Bomber, and a Grumman TBM-3 Avenger . The museum is located at the Clermont County Airport, 62 miles south of the Aviation Trail Visitor Center. It has 24,000 sq. ft. of hangar space and 5,000 sq. ft. of museum display space, and is continuing to grow. See more on the ATI “Trail Sites” page (site #15), or on the Tri-State Warbird Museum website

Tri-State Warbird Museum • 4021 Borman Drive • Batavia, OH 45103

(513) 735-4500


Butler County Warbirds:

Butler County Warbirds, Inc., a not-for-profit corporation, was formed for the purpose of acquiring and maintaining historic aircraft and establishing a series of mobile and permanent historical displays for use in educating and entertaining the public. It is headquartered at Middletown Regional Airport in Middletown, Ohio, just  20 miles Southwest of the Aviation Trail Visitor Center. Rides in  WWII trainer are available by reservation. See more on the ATI “Trail Sites” page (site #16), or on the Butler County Warbirds website

Butler County Warbirds, Inc. • 1707 Run Way • Middletown, OH 45042

(513) 702-3062

Sinclair National UAS Training and Certification Center:

Located on the Sinclair College Dayton Campus in Building 13, the Sinclair National UAS Training and Certification Center and Aviation Technology facilities lead the nation in Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) and traditional aviation training and education, applied research and development, consulting, and STEM outreach. The site’s Wilbear stamp and additional information about the facility and programs are available at a kiosk located in the first-floor lobby and free parking is available in Lot K off Perry Street. Visitors can complete a self-guided tour of the glass-walled facility during normal college hours, which are posted on the primary college website at UAS website at

Sinclair College • 444 West Third Street • Dayton, Ohio 45402

(927) 512-4900 •

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Sinclair National UAS Training
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Aviation Trail, Inc. welcomes these fine facilities to the family of organizations that promote and contribute to this aviation heritage.

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Dec. 10, 2018: News Release
Public Affairs Division, National Museum of the USAF

Former Assistant Deputy Chief Management Officer for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Mr. David Tillotson III, was recently appointed as the director of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. 

A member of the Senior Executive Service since 2002, Tillotson replaces Mr. Jack Hudson who retired on Oct. 5, 2018, after serving as director for nearly eight years.

At the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, Tillotson will manage nearly one million square feet of exhibit space with more than 350 aerospace vehicles and missiles, and thousands of other artifacts. He will also provide technical and professional guidance to the U.S. Air Force Heritage Program, which includes more than 2,400 aerospace vehicles and over 46,000 other artifacts, on loan to nearly 780 domestic and international military heritage activities, civilian museums, cities, municipalities, and veterans' organizations.

Tillotson, who began his new assignment on Nov. 25, said he was truly humbled yet extremely excited to lead the Air Force’s national museum.

“It is a tremendous honor to be selected as the director of the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, and a privilege to be able to help guide this great institution,” said Tillotson. “As the public’s window to the Air Force, the museum is quite a gem and I look forward to working with the staff and volunteers as we carry out our mission to inspire visitors to learn and experience the Air Force story.”

Tillotson was commissioned upon graduation from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1975. His assignments included ground theater air control system units with Tactical Air Command and U.S. Air Forces in Europe. 
Following assignments in operations, Tillotson moved to the Air Force acquisition corps, where he initially served as the Deputy Mission Area Director, Information Dominance, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition. Later he was assigned to Electronic Systems Center at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., as Chief of Experimentation with the Integrated Command and Control System Program Office, and was responsible for the Air Force’s Joint Expeditionary Experiment series. Eventually, he became the System Program Director for the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Integration Program Office. 

After his retirement from active duty, Tillotson served as Director in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Warfighting Integration, and as Deputy Chief Information Officer, HQ U.S. Air Force, before becoming the first Air Force Deputy Chief Management Officer for the Office of the Secretary of the Air Force.

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio, is the world’s largest military aviation museum. With free admission and parking, the museum features more than 350 aerospace vehicles and missiles and thousands of artifacts amid more than 19 acres of indoor exhibit space. Each year about one million visitors from around the world come to the museum. For more information, visit

For more information, contact the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force at (937) 255-3286.


Dayton, Ohio, Dec. 8, 2018--Aviation Trail, Inc, will host its annual celebration of the 115th anniversary of powered flight by Daytonians Wilbur and Orville Wright on Dec. 17 at the aviation-themed Flyboys Deli, 2729 Fairfield Commons Blvd. in Beavercreek.

The time is 6:00 p.m. for the social and 6:30 for an aviation/Dayton themed buffet with entertainment by the "Licorice Stix," a clarinet ensemble from the University of Dayton's New Horizon Music Program.

The featured  speaker is photographer, writer, aviation historian Dan Patterson who will narrate a new documentary film on the Lafayette Escadrille, the American aviators who flew for France during World War I.

The public is invited but reservations for the $35 per person evening are required and can be made at the Aviation Trail website: Click on Membership--Donations--Reservations on the right and scroll down to Event Reservation Orders. You also can go to the Aviation Blog on the far right and scroll down, on the far left, to Aviation Trail Event Dec. 17.

Please make your reservation by Wednesday, Dec. 12.

Since the early 1980s Aviation Trail has hosted a celebratory event to mark the Wrights' first, successful flight of a heavier -than-air machine on the sands of Kitty Hawk, N.C., on Dec. 17, 1903.

That achievement brought the hometown brothers world-wide acclaim. Locally the National Park Service recognized their accomplishments in the early 1990s  with creation of the Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park centered at South Williams street in Dayton.

The Lafayette Escadrille film is a project of the Humanus Documentary Film Foundation with a budget of $1.25 million of which more than $600,000 has been raised. It was the first product commissioned for completion of the 100th anniversary of the World War I armistice on Nov. 11, 2018.

For more information, call Marvin Christian 937.771.0894 or Helen Jones, 937.434.9108

See the event page on this website for reservation information: CLICK HERE

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Wright Brothers National Museum Established at Carillon Historical Park in Dayton, Ohio

August 31, 2018: Dayton History

Federal legislation designates Carillon Historical Park as home to Wright Brothers National Museum

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Dayton History, the owner and operator of Carillon Historical Park and eight other Southwest Ohio historic properties and museums, announced today that federal legislation has designated the re-imagined aviation center at Carillon Historical Park as the John W Berry, Sr. Wright Brothers National Museum.

Congressman Michael Turner (OH-10), who spearheaded the bi-partisan designation effort alongside Ohio Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman, unveiled the Wright Brothers National Museum to a large crowd of aviation enthusiasts.

“It is fitting this be a National Museum,” said Congressman Turner. “The building itself was partially designed by Orville Wright himself, and it displays the first plane that was able to sustain flight.” Turner was referring to the 1905 Wright Flyer III, located inside Wright Hall at Carillon Historical Park. Gifted to the Park by Orville Wright, the 1905 Wright Flyer III is the only airplane designated a National Historic Landmark.

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“The 1903 Wright Flyer I had proven powered flight possible—on a distant stretch of land where the wind could help,” said the Wright brothers’ great grandnephew Stephen Wright. “But it took another two years and two more flying machines … and powered flight was practical. There’s no question that Wilbur and Orville Wright had achieved synergy as a team long before 1905. But it wasn’t until the 1905 Flyer III that the Wright brothers were able to achieve a synergy with their invention.”

Carillon Historical Park, a privately owned 65-acre museum complex featuring 30 exhibit buildings, has more three-dimensional Wright family artifacts on display than any place in the world. The museum is also the owner of and gateway to Orville Wright’s success mansion, Hawthorn Hill, another National Historic Landmark.

Over recent years, through gifts and acquisitions, Dayton History has brought together Wright Brothers artifacts previously owned by numerous historical societies and private collectors. These large groupings of Wright belongings are now reunited with artifacts gifted by Orville Wright in the 1940s to Carillon Park Founder Edward Deeds, former Board Chairman of National Cash Register Company.

“These acquisitions have enabled us to create a most complete understanding of how the Wright family lived, experimented, and changed the world,” said Dayton History President & CEO Brady Kress. “We are thrilled and honored that both Congress and the President have recognized the importance of this story and these exhibits with this designation.”

The new exhibits bring to life the dedication, struggles, and cast of personalities in the lives of Wilbur and Orville Wright—Dayton's most famous sons. In step-by-step fashion, the museum highlights the development of the world’s first heavier-than-air, self-propelled, controllable, piloted flying machine, offering detailed explanation as to why the Wright brothers are justifiably hailed as inventors of the airplane. 


Carillon Historical Park is a popular destination for travelers and history researchers from around the world. Among its thousands of visitors, the Park recently welcomed Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson; Congressman Tom Cole; Author David McCullough; and Director, Producer, and Actor Tom Hanks.

The Wright Brothers National Museum was privately funded through generous gifts from the family of John W Berry, Sr., founder of The Yellow Pages, and the Harry A. Toulmin, Jr., and Virginia B. Toulmin Fund of The Dayton Foundation, descendants of the Wright brothers’ patent attorney.     

About Carillon Historical Park:

Carillon Historical Park is part of Dayton History, a private non-profit organization established to preserve, share, and celebrate our region’s history. The Park's 65-acre campus is home to over 30 historic structures and cares for over three million artifacts. In addition to Carillon Historical Park, the following sites rest under Dayton History’s care: Carillon Brewing Co., Hawthorn Hill, the Paul Laurence Dunbar House Historic Site, Patterson Homestead, the Old Court House, Memorial Hall, and the Archive Center. 

PARK INFORMATION: (937) 293-2841

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Groundbreaking Ceremony for Heritage Center of Regional Leadership
at Dayton History's Carillon Historical Park

July 19, 2018: Dayton History

New Center provides space for today's leaders

to write tomorrow's stories

DAYTON, OHIO—Ground was broken at Carillon Historical Park on Thursday, July 19, 2018, at 10:30 a.m. as construction of the new Heritage Center of Regional Leadership officially began. 


Boasting an impressive 32,000 square feet, the new Leadership Center will feature classrooms; meeting spaces; an exhibit gallery of nationally recognized regional leaders; an outdoor dining plaza; a beautifully restored 1904 Barney & Smith railcar; a new Culp’s Café, reimagined in the style of an early 20th century soda fountain; new restrooms; and a 500+ capacity banquet pavilion. Roll & Associates will serve as architect and Danis will oversee construction; with an expected completion date of summer 2019, the building will connect the Kettering Family Education Center to Carillon Brewing Company.

This latest addition to Carillon Park’s campus is designed as both a welcome and introduction to the Dayton region, serving out-of-town visitors and longtime residents alike. Featuring some key never-before-exhibited artifacts and a host of regional stories, the new Leadership Center will provide guests with a sense of place. 


“As a private not-for-profit charity, everything we do is donor driven,” says Dayton History President & CEO Brady Kress. “This new Leadership Center was made possible by the generous support of several financial champions—donors and partners who have made their mark in the Dayton region, and are excited about providing an opportunity for future leaders to make theirs.”  

Carillon Historical Park is part of Dayton History, a private non-profit organization established to preserve, share, and celebrate our region’s history. The Park's 65-acre campus is home to over 30 historic structures and cares for over three million artifacts. In addition to Carillon Historical Park, the following sites rest under Dayton History’s care: Carillon Brewing Co., Hawthorn Hill, the Paul Laurence Dunbar House Historic Site, Patterson Homestead, the Old Court House, Memorial Hall, and the Archive Center.

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Kendell Thompson Selected as Superintendent of
Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park

News Release, July 11, 2018, National Park Service Midwest, Omaha

Omaha - National Park Service (NPS) Midwest Regional Director Cam Sholly announced the selection of Kendell Thompson as superintendent of Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park in Dayton, Ohio. A 31-year veteran of the NPS, Thompson is currently Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial superintendent. He has served as the acting superintendent at Dayton Aviation since August 2017. He assumes his new role August 5, 2018.


"I have appreciated Kendell's performance as the acting superintendent at Dayton Aviation over the past months and what he accomplished previously as the superintendent of Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial," said Sholly. "He has done an excellent job of listening and fostering relationships and will be a strong superintendent and partner to the community."

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"It is an honor to be selected as the superintendent of Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park, a site that explores the limitless possibilities that can be accomplished by determined people," Thompson said. "Dayton Aviation tells a story of innovation and resiliency. It celebrates how the Wright brothers changed history, and also examines the amazing legacy of Paul Laurence Dunbar, one of America's most revered poets. Like the Wrights and Dunbar, Dayton Aviation marks a truly innovative, partnership approach to a national park, and I am excited to join the efforts of our many partners, staff and the Miami Valley community to help tell these stories."


For the past eight years, Thompson has served as superintendent of Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial in Lincoln City, Indiana. Originally from Oklahoma, Thompson's career with the National Park Service spans over 42 years from when he began volunteering at age 13 at Mount Rainier National Park in Washington. He has served in 13 National Park Service areas including Mount Rainier National Park, Denali National Park, Jean Lafitte National Historical Park, the USS Arizona Memorial, Arlington House, the Robert E. Lee Memorial, and Yosemite National Park. He is a second-generation ranger, following in his father's footsteps.


Thompson earned his bachelor of science in wildlife conservation with minors in botany and sociology from Southeastern Oklahoma State University and earned a law enforcement commission from the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center. He has served as the editorial advisor for Ranger magazine since 2012, has authored a novel, and published multiple articles.


In his spare time, Thompson enjoys outdoor recreation, home brewing, and cooking. Along with his wife Emily and their three children, he is looking forward to exploring the Five Rivers MetroParks and hiking, biking and kayaking the many miles of Dayton's trail system. Read the full press release here.

Aviation Trail August Event at Woodland Cemetery

News Release; June 28, 2018:

Aviation Trail, Inc.


Sunday, August 19, 2018  •  4:00 PM to 6:00 PM - FREE
Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum
118 Woodland Ave, Dayton, OH 45409, USA

Take a tour of historic Woodland Cemetery with a visit to the Wright Brothers grave site, and see other highlights of the historic cemetery and arboretum.

Aviation Trail holds an annual event each August to celebrate the birthdays of Orville and Katherine Wright. Each were born on August 19, Orville in 1871 and Katherine in 1874. With 2018 being the 70th anniversary of Orville's burial, this year's Aviation Trail event will be held at historic Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum. The event also celebrates National Aviation Day.

A walking tour will include the Wright Brothers grave site where we will give a toast to the Wright Brothers and their family. The tour will visit the other notables in the same section as the Wright’s including Paul Laurence Dunbar, the Mead Family, the Kiser Family, Preserved Smith and many more. The walk will continue up to the Lookout and conclude with a walk back down to the Mausoleum.

8-20-18 - Editor's post script: Photos from the concluded event can be seen on the event page (see button at right).

Where Aviation's Legacy and Future Combine

News Release; May 2, 2018:

From Amy Spowart, National Aviation Hall of Fame,


Picture yourself in a room with the brightest stars of aviation.  Imagine looking over your shoulder and seeing an Apollo astronaut or across the room at the only living X-15 test pilot.  Envision networking with industry leaders and the officials who make the choices that fund your product or service.


A historic event, amazing people and an admirable cause.

It wouldn't be the same without you.


The National Aviation Hall of Fame Enshrinement is your opportunity to support the nation's only Congressionally chartered aviation hall of fame and witness history as Colonel Walt Cunningham, USMC (Ret), General Jack Dailey, USMC (Ret), Mr. Bill Dana and General Ron Fogleman, USAF (Ret) are inducted.  


Our mission...ensure these pioneers of aviation are never forgotten. 

Your and observe their induction.  


Both of us have weighty and worthy goals.

But I believe that we are up for the challenge!


Come with us to Washington, D.C. and be a part of two exciting events: The exclusive President's Reception on Thursday, September 27th at the National Air & Space Museum and the National Aviation Hall of Fame's 56th Annual Enshrinement Dinner & Ceremony on Friday, September 28th at the National Building Museum.

Event details and sponsorship opportunities are explained here: 


Don't miss your chance to take part! 






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Aviation Trail Announces Champaign Aviation Museum

as the Recipient of the 2018 Trailblazer Award

March 23, 2018

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ATI's Board of Trustees has chosen the Champaign Aviation Museum in nearby Urbana, Ohio, as recipient of its 2018 Trailblazer Award.

   An Aviation Trail site, the free museum, on the south end of Grimes Field municipal airport in Urbana, displays seven World War II "warbirds" including the B-17 "Champaign Lady" now in a major restoration.

The other aircraft on flying or static display there are a B-25 "Champaign Gal," C-47, Stinson 10A, Fairchild  F-24, A-26 Invader and a C-45 Expeditor.

   To show support for the Museum, the Trailblazer Award will be presented by ATI President Marvin Christian at Champaign's annual gala Saturday, April 21, at the Museum. ATI members can attend and should access the Museum's web site for details:

   "Our ATI Board decided this year to let the award travel to the Champaign event --and perhaps begin a trend in award presentation," Christian said.

Christian added that the award also honors Jerry Shiffer, now deceased--a local business leader, private pilot, and supporter of community causes--and his family who have generously nurtured the Champaign Museum to its present-day status.

See more on the Trailblazer Event Page.

The mission of the Champaign Aviation Museum is more far-reaching than "warbird" aircraft restoration, Christian added. It includes education of youth and adults about the World War II-era aircraft, their crew members, and veterans' combat and personal experiences.

Two B-17 Aircraft and more than 130 Reenactors Scheduled to take part in

B-17F Memphis Belle­­™ Exhibit Opening Events

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March 6, 2018 - News Release, National Museum of the United States Air Force

DAYTON, Ohio — Two B-17G Flying Fortresses and more than 130 reenactors are scheduled to take part in the opening events for the B-17 Memphis Belle™ exhibit at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, May 17-19, 2018. 

The B-17F Memphis Belle – the first U.S. Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the United States after completing 25 combat missions over occupied Europe – and surrounding strategic bombardment exhibit will be unveiled to the public following a ribbon cutting ceremony on the morning of May 17 - exactly 75 years after its crew finished their last mission in the war against Nazi Germany on May 17, 1943.   

To help celebrate the new exhibit, plans call for B-17G Yankee Lady, from the Yankee Air Museum in Belleville, MI, and B-17G Aluminum Overcast, from the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) in Oshkosh, WI, to land at the museum on May 16 at approximately 9 a.m. The aircraft will then be available for viewing on static display May 17-18 from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. On May 18 at approximately 4:30 p.m., visitors in the museum’s Memorial Park may view the aircraft as they take-off and depart the grounds. (Note: Outdoor events are weather dependent and subject to change.)

Visitors will also be able to experience the sights and sounds of World War II as more than 130 reenactors from around the country bring history to life by performing war-time skits, showcasing their displays and interacting with the public in an encampment near the museum's 8th Air Force Control Tower, May 17-19 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.


Betsy Bashore, who has been a reenactor for more than 34 years and now organizes the largest WWII reenactment in the U.S., D-Day Conneaut in northern Ohio, is helping the museum coordinate the reenactor activities. Reenactors scheduled to be on-hand at the museum will represent WWII-era pilots, navigators, ground crew, Army infantrymen, medics, cooks, Army nurses and Red Cross workers - all with the goal of taking visitors back in time.


"Our mission is to connect people with history and events of the past, and to be able to do it at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force is a spectacular opportunity," said Bashore. "We look forward to helping augment the museum's activities during the Memphis Belle exhibit opening by providing visitors with an in-depth, more hands-on experience with history." 

Along with the reenactors, more than 20 vintage military and civilian vehicles will be on display such as a 1938 Buick Special; 1942 Chevrolet airfield crash truck; 1943 Dodge WC-54 Ambulance; and several Willys MB Jeep and Ford GPW vehicles.  

On Friday, May 18, a special outdoor Big Band concert featuring Glenn Miller music will be performed by Air Force Bands from 6-7:30 p.m., near the 8th Air Force Control Tower. The concert is free and no tickets are required. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs or blankets, and hard surfaces are available for wheelchairs. (Note: The concert is weather dependent and will not be re-scheduled in the event of inclement weather.)

Throughout the event, the museum’s Education Division will be offering many STEM, flight and period specific learning events and activities in the Learning Center, STEM Learning Nodes, and WWII Gallery. Among the activities will be demonstrations on the four forces of flight to include building, testing and flying small balsa wood gliders, which visitors will be able to keep. Other flight simulation learning activities will provide visitors with a better understanding on how aircraft like the B-17 Memphis Belle were able to perform its critical wartime missions. Scavenger hunts and other educational games will be available for the public to test their knowledge about the WWII era.


In addition, the Air Force Museum Foundation’s Living History Film Series will present the 1944 William Wyler documentary film, “The Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress,” which contains actual combat footage, in the Air Force Museum Theatre on Thurs, May 17 at 6:30 p.m. On Sat. May 19, the 1990 film “Memphis Belle” will be shown at 4:30 p.m. in the Air Force Museum Theatre. Wyler’s daughter Catherine, who produced the 1990 film, will be at guest speaker and take questions from the audience at both films, along with Chris Henry of the EAA Aviation Museum, who will speak about what life was like aboard the famous Flying Fortress in the war, and the bond that exists between the people and the machine. Tickets for these films will be available on March 26 at

Also during the event, authors Graham Simons and Harry Friedman will be signing copies of their book, “Memphis Belle: Dispelling the Myths" in the WWII Gallery. Simons will also will be signing his book “Images of War” in the Museum Store. Finally, author Steve Snyder will be available to sign copies of his book, “Shot Down” in the store on May 17.

According to Museum Director, Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jack Hudson, with so many activities packed into three days in May, the Memphis Belle exhibit opening will certainly be a fun and educational event for the entire family.

“Museum staff and our partners on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and in the community have been working together for nearly two years to plan a wonderful tribute in commemoration of the sacrifice of the heavy bomber crewmen during WWII,” said Hudson. “We encourage everyone to come out and enjoy these ‘once in a lifetime’ type of experiences that will take place both indoors and outdoors as we celebrate the opening of the new Memphis Belleexhibit.”

For more information, photos and videos of the Memphis Belle, visit

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio, is the world’s largest military aviation museum. With free admission and parking, the museum features more than 360 aerospace vehicles and missiles and thousands of artifacts amid more than 19 acres of indoor exhibit space. Each year about one million visitors from around the world come to the museum. For more information, visit

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Woodland Cemetery In Dayton Awarded Level II Arboretum Accreditation

by ArbNet Accreditation Program

March 6, 2018 - Angie Hoschouer, Manager of Development and Marketing,

 Woodland Cemetery & Arboretum

DAYTON, OH –Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum in Dayton has been awarded a Level II Accreditation by The ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program and The Morton Arboretum, for achieving particular standards of professional practices deemed important for arboreta and botanic gardens. The ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program is the only global initiative to officially recognize arboreta at various levels of development, capacity, and professionalism. Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum is also now recognized as an accredited arboretum in the Morton Register of Arboreta, a database of the world’s arboreta and gardens dedicated to woody plants. 

Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum sits in the heart of downtown Dayton on over 200 verdant acres of rolling hills with over 3000 trees on the property. Founded in 1841 and established by John Van Cleve, Van Cleve chose the original 40 acre site for its hilltop views and remarkable variety of trees. In 1843, Van Cleve did an inventory of the trees on the property and found 41 different species. In the early years, special care was taken to preserve the finest specimens of trees and shrubs to retain the natural beauty of the area. Most of these tree species are still represented on the grounds and the species list has grown to over 165. Woodland is best known for its collection of Oak trees. Of the 58 species that are native to North America, Woodland has 25 varieties. Over the years, Woodland has been the recipient 10 “State Champion Tree” awards from the Ohio Division of Forestry. 


Woodland continues to grow its tree population with strategic removal of dying or distressed trees. Removal of such trees allows the undergrowth the opportunity to flourish and to fill in the canopy where needed. The arboretum works closely with Mark Webber, a Board Certified Master Arborist, to select and plant trees and shrubs throughout the grounds. Additionally, Woodland was selected by the Ohio Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture (OCISA) to hold a series of free educational programs for green industry professionals at the arboretum through April 2019. Beginning in May 2018, Woodland will offer its annual series of tree tours called Let’s Talk Trees which will be held on the second Wednesday of each month, May through October, at 10:00 a.m.


Webber stated that, “If you like trees and plants that have stood the test of time, then a visit to Woodland should be on your calendar. When I first visited Woodland in 1986, I was taken aback by how grand the trees of this place were, by how their branches created a cathedral-like experience. More so, the collections of trees and plants at Woodland are a beautiful living botanical guide for anyone who wants to experience and or learn about plants. However more compelling is how the trees of Woodland play such a significant role in Dayton's urban core by improving air quality, reducing ozone, having a place of solitude and remembrance, and providing other critical social and environmental services. Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum is one of Dayton, Ohio's most magnificent jewels of the Gem City.” 


You can visit Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum 365 days a year from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. daily. For more information visit the Woodland website at  For more information on ArbNet see  

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B-17F Memphis Belle™ Restoration Continues to Move Closer to the Finish Line

Feb. 1, 2018 - National Museum of the United States Air Force

DAYTON, Ohio — Restoration on the B-17F Memphis Belle™ – the first U.S. Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the United States after completing 25 missions over Europe – continues to move forward at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.


Since the aircraft first arrived at the museum in 2005, museum staff and volunteers have worked meticulously for countless hours to preserve the iconic bomber, which was in great need of corrosion treatment, the full outfitting of an extensive list of missing equipment, and having the proper paints and techniques applied.


One of the first challenges for restoring the aircraft was to obtain a list of missing parts, determine what could be obtained from a similar aircraft, and then try to fabricate the rest.


According to Casey Simmons, a Restoration Specialist at the museum, obtaining parts for a 1940s-era aircraft was not an easy task.  

“For any of the parts that we needed on the airplane, if you can’t get another one from another aircraft you have to completely fabricate the part,” said Simmons. “So that means going to the blueprints, figuring out what goes into that, how they did it and trying to re-create that process.”


Some of the parts that had to be fabricated by the Restoration Division included the gun mounts; all of the flooring; new sheet metal on the right vertical stabilizer and left bomb-bay door; the wind screen and eyebrow glass in the cockpit; a fuselage longeron and rear vertical stabilizer spar.


One of the parts that Simmons helped to fabricate was the glycol heater, which went inside the left wing of the aircraft and provided heat for the cabin.


“No one will ever see it but we had to completely fabricate that from scratch and it is fully functional,” said Simmons. “But I know the work that went into it and I know where it’s at so it’s pretty neat.”


Among the most challenging aspects of the restoration of the Memphis Belle was painting the aircraft. The painting process lasted several months with plans calling for the aircraft to look as it did after completing its 25th mission, but before it went on the war bond tour. Authentic paint for the time period was used so that the aircraft would look as close as possible to that period in time. 

“We were looking at pictures down to the single rivets on the aircraft to try to get markings where they belong,” said Simmons. “You have a lot of different images from different sources, and you’re trying to match colors but the color in every photograph is just a little different depending on how the film was developed. So the hardest part is getting it exactly the way it needs to be.”


Even in going to those lengths, the color on the vertical tail and control surfaces are slightly different shades of green than the rest of the aircraft and Simmons has an explanation for that too.


“When the aircraft first came out of the factory, it would have been pretty much one color of green,” said Simmons. “However, as you can see in the photographs from that time period after it completed its 25th mission, the paint began to fade and so we had to replicate that as well.”


Museum Curator Jeff Duford, who led efforts to research the colors and markings on the Memphis Belle, discovered that although the paint on the tail faded over time, the paint that’s on the fabric-covered control surfaces faded faster and to a greater degree than the rest of the aircraft. So the museum team worked until they got those colors right as well.


“We actually mixed 25 different samples to get to the right shade of green to ensure that the color is accurate,” said Duford.  


To a large extent, Duford credits the 1944 William Wyler film, “The Memphis Belle,” as the reason why so much information about the aircraft was available. Wyler volunteered to serve the country and the Army Air Forces gave him a commission as a Major and sent him over to England to film heavy bomber operations. He brought a camera crew with him and they shot hours and hours of color footage of heavy bomber operations including some scenes in combat.


“In the film you see aircraft dropping bombs, aircraft getting shot down, German fighters attacking them, and real flak” said Duford. “So Wyler and his cameramen were taking the very same risks that the bombing crewmen were, and in fact one of them was killed in a combat mission.”


Wyler’s team shot more than 11 hours of color footage, which is now preserved in the national archives and the museum obtained a copy of it.


“Because of this color footage, we’re able to correctly mark and configure the aircraft today,” said Duford. “It is truly astounding because we’ve worked on many restorations here and by far there is more evidence about the Memphis Belle because of these out-takes than any other restoration that we’ve done.”


In addition the museum also obtained copies of more than 5,000 original documents related to the combat history of the Memphis Belle and heavy bomber operations, which provided a wealth of information including details on each crewmember and mission. 


According to Duford, all of the time and effort spent on all of the details to accurately restore the aircraft - from its structural parts to the paint that’s used to color its appearance - is what this national treasure deserves.  


“We have symbols in the history of our country – things like the flag that flew at Iwo Jima; the battleship Arizona - these recognizable symbols of the American experience, and the Memphis Belle is truly one of those icons in our history,” said Duford. “And now fittingly so, the aircraft will be preserved at the Air Force’s national museum for generations to come.” 


Although restoring the Memphis Belle has been a long and strenuous process – which will continue in the interior of the aircraft even after it has been placed on display - it’s also been very rewarding as well, said Simmons.


“When I first got here in 2007, the aircraft was in multiple pieces - just individual bare metal sections of the aircraft,” said Simmons. “Now it is a complete aircraft that actually looks like something, and it’s just the biggest transformation that you could ever imagine.”


Plans call for the B-17F Memphis Belle exhibit to open to the public on Thursday, May 17, 2018, with celebratory events May 17-19, 2018. This three day event will include a WWII-era aircraft static displays, flyovers, WWII reenactors and vehicles, memorabilia and artifact displays, music from the era, related guest speakers for lectures, book signings and films, including both Memphis Belle films in the Air Force Museum Theatre.


For more information, photos and videos of the Memphis Belle, visit


The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio, is the world’s largest military aviation museum. With free admission and parking, the museum features more than 360 aerospace vehicles and missiles and thousands of artifacts amid more than 19 acres of indoor exhibit space. Each year about one million visitors from around the world come to the museum. For more information, visit


For more information, please contact the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force at (937) 255-3286.

National Park Service Sites Owned by Dayton History Remain Open During Government Shutdown

Carillon Historical Park, Jan. 22, 2018


Dayton History, a private non-profit entity recognized as the official historical organization for Montgomery County, Ohio, is proud to own two units of Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park.


Since Dayton History receives no ongoing financial support from any federal agency for the sites it owns and operates, its museum operations remain unaffected by the current partial shutdown of the federal government.


The following sites of Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park remain open and ready to welcome visitors from throughout the Miami Valley and across the globe:


The John W. Berry, Sr. Wright Brothers Aviation Center at Carillon Historical Park, housing the 1905 Wright Flyer III and dozens of original Wright artifacts, is open 360 days per year. Located at 1000 Carillon Boulevard in Dayton, the site is open Monday through Saturday from 9:30-5:00 and Sunday from 12:00-5:00.  Admission fees of $8.00 per adult (18-59), $7.00 per senior citizen (60+) and $5.00 per child (3-17) are in effect. Children under 3, as well as Dayton History members, are admitted free of charge.


Hawthorn Hill, Orville Wright's success mansion, provides visitors with a glimpse into the mind of the world's first successful airplane pilot. Tours are conducted year-round on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 10:00 and 12:30 via shuttle van access from Carillon Historical Park. Advance, prepaid reservations are required.  Hawthorn Hill admission fees of $12 per person and $10 per Dayton History member apply.


CONTACT: Leo DeLuca, Dayton History Media Coordinator,, 937.293.2841 Ext. 138

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National Aviation Hall of Fame Enshrinement Locations

January 22, 2018: Press Release: National Aviation Hall of Fame Enshrinement Locations


The Board of Trustees of the National Aviation Hall of Fame (NAHF) are pleased to announce the site selections of Washington, DC in 2018, Denver, CO in 2019 and Dayton, OH in 2020. The nearly unanimous vote by the Board reaffirms the Board’s strategy of expanding the National Aviation Hall of Fame brand to a national audience.

The Class of 2018 will be inducted in late September in Washington, D.C.  Chairman Michael Quiello says, “The Washington D.C. area is very easy to travel to and has outstanding accommodations and venues. Our induction ceremony will certainly attract senior industry leaders in both the private and government sectors. As a national organization, it is an honor and privilege to be inducting the Class of 2018 in our nation’s capital.”

“We are also proud to announce that the Class of 2019 will be inducted at the Wings Over the Rockies Museum in Denver, CO,” reports President David Brixey. Brixey adds, “We have yet to take our brand to the western U.S. and feel that Denver’s aerospace-rich environment is ideal for us to share our mission in another exciting market.”

Executive Director Amy Spowart adds, “Our goal is that by 2020 our Learning Center, which is visited by over a quarter of a million visitors a year and is co-located with the National Museum of the United States Air Force, will have been completely renovated and revitalized with updated content, improved state-of-the art interactives and sponsored galleries. This would make Dayton the ideal location for a magnificent Homecoming Enshrinement event and a grand unveiling of our new Learning Center.”


 (See the "Class of 2018" announcement below).


National Aviation Hall of Fame Reveals "Class of 2018"

Announcement made today at National Aeronautic Association dinner in Washington, D.C.


Today the National Aviation Hall of Fame (NAHF) announced the four individuals who have been elected for its 2018 Enshrinement Dinner & Ceremony. Executive Board Member Dr. Kathy Hughes and Executive Director Amy Spowart revealed the names before an audience of nearly 300 attendees at the fall awards dinner of the National Aeronautic Association in Washington, D.C.

Each year, the NAHF Board of Nominations, a voting body comprised of over 120 aviation professionals nationwide, selects a handful of previously-nominated air and space pioneers to be recognized for their achievements with induction into the NAHF.  Since its founding in 1962, 237 men and women have been honored with enshrinement into the Congressionally-chartered 501(c)(3).

The NAHF Class of 2018 is a diverse group representing a broad range of enduring contributions to both the advancement of flight and the manned exploration of space:

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Colonel Walter Cunningham, USMCR (Ret) is a decorated Korean War veteran, fighter pilot, physicist, Apollo 7 Lunar Module Pilot and SKYLAB Chief.

General John R. (Jack) Dailey, USMC (Ret) is a decorated Vietnam veteran, Former Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps, Chief of Staff, Former Deputy Administrator of NASA and the acting Director of the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.


(The late) William H. (Bill) Dana was a 40 year veteran of NASA, test pilot and aeronautical engineer. He was also the project pilot for the X-15 and pilot astronaut for the X-20, among several other aircraft.


General Ronald R. Fogleman, USAF (Ret) is a United States Air Force Academy graduate, decorated Vietnam veteran (logging 80 missions as a Misty), Command Pilot and Parachutist, 15th Chief of Staff of the Air Force and author of the Air Force Core Values.


The NAHF was founded in Dayton in 1962 and chartered by the U.S. Congress in 1964. Its mission is to honor America’s aerospace legends to inspire future leaders, which it does through a 17,000 square-foot public Learning Center featuring interactive exhibits, a youth education program, other public outreach programs, its annual enshrinement ceremony and collaboration with like-minded organizations.


For 2017 News Archives CLICK HERE

For 2015/2016 News Archives CLICK HERE

For 2014 News Archives CLICK HERE

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