Some scientific and technological marvels become so commonplace that we seldom take the time to re-examine their revolutionary impact with an open and inquisitive mind.
One such example is air transport.
Think about it for a moment: In just a handful of generations, aviation went from pure, pie-in-the-sky speculation to a mundane reality that inspires about as much wonder as a trip aboard a Greyhound bus.
It’s that ho-hum attitude to the miracle of flight that makes National Aviation Day such an excellent national observation. It takes place on August 19 — Orville Wright’s birthday!
Let’s take a closer look.
National Aviation Day – History
National Aviation Day Activities
Take a trip to North Carolina
What better way to commemorate the achievements of the Wright brothers than by flying to North Carolina and visiting the Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills?
Build your own airplane
It doesn’t have to be a real one, of course. You can build an airplane using Legos. Or you can go for that old school-days standby — the paper plane.
Gather with a group of friends where you can watch airplanes taking off and landing. Bring food if the spirit moves you — a “planespotting” picnic!
Why We Love National Aviation Day
We always choose the window seat
Yes, some of us still stare in wonder out the plane’s window as we ponder something that seems delightfully impossible. We are, after all, sitting inside a giant flying machine, traveling many hundreds of miles per hour, thousands of feet above the landscape below. How can this be?
Space is the final frontier
Many of the mechanical, technological and scientific breakthroughs in space travel would be unthinkable without the advancements inspired by the Wright Brothers’ original experiments on a sandy strip of North Carolina coastline.
The proclamation is simple and beautiful
The National Aviation Day proclamation invites “the people of the United States to observe National Aviation Day with appropriate exercises to further stimulate interest in aviation in the United States.”