You may be looking on this web-site because you have heard that
"Oshkosh" is the World's biggest airshow? Well it is, but it is also something much more than that. Something that is not easy to communicate until you have experienced it. In strict reality "Oshkosh" is the Experimental Aircraft Association's annual Convention, called EAA AirVenture, but it also happens to have a daily Airshow attached. Yes, some people do come to take part in the business sessions , but The great majority of the 6,000,000+++ visitor/days that result are spent taking in the sights and sounds and information and, above all else, the camaraderie of what goes on. The goal of EAA is to provide something for everyone when it comes to aviation experiences and to show what is new and innovative on the flight line.
You can feel the energy as thousands of airplanes arrive early, pushing aircraft camping to capacity. Those who attend are interested, eager and passionate, demonstratin that Oshkosh represents general aviation at its very best.
Over 5,000 volunteers are involved in organising camping areas, vehicle parking, traffic management, driving tractor trailers to move people around the site and selling admission tickets, to create an event where unforgettable aviation experiences can happen.
If you 'do' airshows then you will know about fences. Flight line fences, fences around planes etc. Well, at Oshkosh there are hardly any fences. That 'in service' military jet might have a little bit of rope round it plus a couple of uniformed attendants but they will be spending their time answering questions, not guarding it!
The Flight Line is just a marking on the grass, and nobody crosses it. The rows of gleaming planes on display don't have fences round them because people attending know how to behave around planes. Over 10000 airplanes from sport and recreational flyers to warbirds, ultra light and microlight are parked on site to view., those people sitting on folding chairs under the wing are the owners, and they will be delighted to engage in conversation with you and explain the long and meticulous process of restoring their machine to a state of "better than when it left the factory". And you are most welcome to take photos.
These plane owners turn up, many of them year after year. They don't turn up for profit because there is no fuel money or attendance money paid. They turn up because of the camaraderie both with other owners and pilots, and with the visitors as well. and people from all over the USA, and Canada (they are the ones interested in floatplanes!), and from all over the world flock to the EAA Convention and Airshow.
Whatever your area of interest in aviation there is something, here for you.
If you are thinking about building your own plane, or buying bits for one you have started, learning techniques, historical study (the EAA Museum is one of the top venues, with very high display standards), watching Championship standard aerobatics, seeing the innovative or ultra-rare planes fly in - Oshkosh can claim many 'firsts' - or just simply meeting friendly people, this is the place to be.
If you are fit and very well organised you might manage to see a quarter of what goes on during the week.......from all the exhitits the exhibitors, the forums, and the workshops.
Evenings? All catered too. Usually a Rock Concert on Monday night, a spectacular Night Airshow on Wednesday and Saturday, Oshkosh/ NZ group dinner on Thursday. International Visitors Party on Friday.
And late on the Sunday after all the visitors have left, what about the mess? Well, there isn't much. Nobody drops litter, and if you see any you pick it up. Nice that!