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CAK Authority Dedicates Aviation Park and Celebrates Centennial Anniversary of Flight

Download File: pr0312wright-336.pdf






Green, OH: The first runway was 60 feet long and made of 2x4s laid in the sand. Orville and

Wilbur Wright used this primitive surface to launch the Flyer 100 years ago today at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Orville piloted the plane and kept it aloft for 12 seconds. He and his brother managed powered flight and it changed the world.  The importance of that first flight is celebrated and captured in a full size rendition of the Wright Flyer at the airport.s new Aviation Park, which will be dedicated at 10:35 a.m. today, the exact time of the first lift-off. The park commemorates the pioneers of flight in our community and acknowledges the many contributions of airport leaders who have tirelessly volunteered their time and expertise for the past six decades.


Akron-Canton Airport Board President, Cathy Godshall says, "This is a day to celebrate what

brings us together as an aviation community. Our love of the airport and of flight itself is worthy of this impressive memorial. Our sincere thanks go out to those that paved the way for our airport to become a powerful part of the air transportation network in Northeast Ohio".


The Akron-Canton Airport Aviation Park was planned by a group of aviation enthusiast who

envisioned a permanent monument to flight that would also serve as an educational tool for people of all ages. 


"We are grateful to Aviation Days Incorporated, headed by Don Armen, (President, McKinley Air), for conceiving and delivering such a magnificent gift to the airport," said airport director Fred Krum.


The park also features granite walls of honor listing major aviation contributors in the Akron-Canton area including, past and present board members, private pilots, airport directors and other important supporters. 


"Powered flight is an essential part of the American way of life. You can't help but be awe inspired by the contrast of this first Flyer and the state-of-the-art aircraft that take-off from CAK today," Krum added.


Once inside the main entrance of the airport, Aviation Park is located North of the main road

leading to the terminal. Park visits will be available during normal airport operating hours 4:30 a.m. to Midnight seven days a week. Two 30-minute, complimentary parking spots are available adjacent to the park.


The Akron-Canton Airport (CAK) was dedicated in 1946. American and United Airlines

commenced the airport.s first scheduled flights on July 1, 1948. Capital and Eastern added service on August 14, 1948, offering a combined 35 daily flights. 92,000 passengers used CAK that first year. General, military and corporate aviation interests also flourished.

Today, CAK is the third fastest growing airport in the country with a 55% increase in passengers

expected over the next five years, according to a recent forecast published by the Boyd Group of Evergreen, Colorado. More than 1.1 million passengers will use CAK in 2003 accounting for a 30 percent increase compared to 2002.  AirTran Airways, Delta Connection, Northwest Airlink, United Express, and US Airways Express serve the growing Akron-Canton market.


The airport is currently in the third phase of the $60 million, fiveyear STAR expansion project, which will focus on the building of a new $24 million gate concourse and a new Shuffel Road interchange. The first two phases included longer runways, a new baggage claim wing, additional car parking and a food court with national brands. Additional airport information is available at Akron-Canton Airport, a better way to go.


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