Niagara Windriders Newsletter

The Official Newsletter of the Niagara Windriders Kitefliers Association, Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada

Monday, April 27, 2009

April Fun Fly

I woke up to an overcast, foggy, drizzly sky in Stoney Creek. It was about 8 degrees (46 for you south of the border), not a promising day for the first fun fly of 2009. After lunch I set off to Port Colborne with all my kites in the trunk and my winter jacket and gloves in the back seat. I was prepared for the worst case weather. As I headed south from St Catherines, the outside temperature on the cars' dashboard started climbing. The clouds were breaking up and the sun was out. When I arrived at Lakeview Park it was very bright and 22 degrees. That was good enough for just the tshirt and no sweater. There were about 15 kiters already there and they were catching up and showing off their kites. The only problem was that someone forgot to order a nice windy day!

With a very light wind, the only thing to do was admire all the kites on the ground.

Here's Bob trying to save his roller as the wind died and it fell out of the sky.

The gound display was very colourful, with everyone hoping that the wind would pick up.

Bob and Greg admiring one of Bob's homemade 4 liners. Again, on the ground waiting for a gust.

I attempted to fly my Blast, which will fly with very little wind, but alas it was too much effort to keep it airborn.

I gave up at 3:30 and set off back to Stoney Creek. When I got home it was still overcast and 10 degrees (there was even a steady breeze). This just shows you how different the weather can be, and only 45 mins drive by car. Well, hopefully the wind and sun will cooperate on May 31st, our next scheduled Fun Fly for 2009. See you at the end of May!

Saturday, April 04, 2009

2009 Kite Building Workshop

It started as a rainy cool Sunday, one of those days you really didn't feel like getting out of bed. Oh, but wait, there is a kite workshop and I need a new kite for the 2009 season. A Jimmy Pentagon Kite to be exact. That's what we set off to make in this year's start to the season. People arrived before the 10:00 starting time to set up their sewing machines, grab a coffee and a donut and to display the projects they worked on over the winter.

Bob White gave a brief history of the pentagon shaped kite and then the procedure for making the kite. He showed a few examples of what can be done to "animate" the unique shape.

Soon everyone picked a colour and started cutting and sewing. Here are some "birds eye" views

Doug carefully taping the edges of his yellow kite.

Carlos' butterfly kites.

At around noon, Doug Jermyn stopped in to show us some a picture of the SilverDart and a section of a tetrahedral that he received while in Baddeck. He gave a short update on the goings on with the SilverDart replica and then stayed for some lunch.

Here's Fred and Donna helping Andy with his kite.

At around 3:00 almost everyone had finished and helped to clean up for our group photo.

The sun had broken up the clouds and rain, so a few of us ventured out to the usual flying spot to try out our new kites along with some of the other kites that were displayed at the workshop.

At the end of it all, we had a great turnout. 6 clubs were represented, 33 attendees and 30ish new kites to fly. Thanks to Bob White to take time in his hectic schedule to organize a great workshop, Stephanie Bowes and Chris White for making sure we were fed (nobody likes a hungry kiter), Vaino Raun for the much needed coffee at the start of the workshop, and Mary Kort for taking all our money.

This workshop is a great way to start the season and I will be looking forward to April 26th for good weather and a steady breeze to see everybody again and to fly a few kites as well.