August 29, 2006
Foggy Long Beach

Long Beach is an astounding kite gathering. The Washington State International Kite Festival is a week long with focused themes each day, From Fighters to art kites to bear drops to giant kites, to mass ascensions and fun flies, there is something for everyone. But they really ought to move the festival date to the summer….

WSIKF Panorama

For the better part of the week, the huge beach at the southern edge of Washington was socked in with thick, damp mist. We still lofted plenty of fabric into the sky. But at times you couldn’t be sure it was still up there. Click Here.

Occasionally the sun burst through and the Long Beach sky sparkled. But for the most part, it just oozed. Kiter spirits were not dampened however, and there were plenty of smiles on the beach.

WSIKF Panorama

With the winds blowing light, I took the opportunity Thursday to test out two oversize Crowns. They don’t look all that big in the photos until you compare them to the normal 28 footers or to other generally large features on the beach – like Brian Champie. The Super Size Crowns stand 56 feet tall.

Crown Show! Crown Show! Crown Show!

How much?? Everyone asked. But for safety reasons we aren’t offering them for sale.

This was the 25th annual kite gathering on the beach and the festivals easily covered a full mile of ocean frontage. Different people would find different elements to focus on. For me, this year, it was the Crowns. Saturday, as the kiter parade marched across the sand, we anchored 18 of the standard 8 meter models in the main arena.

Crown Show!

Now, keeping 18 Crowns inflated at the same time is like spinning a dozen plates on sticks. You have to run back and fourth attending to which ever pieces suddenly decides to collapse. I think the best we did was 17 pieces at once. Organizers called it a “world record”—and while the feat may not make the cover of Guinness, it was still a wondrous sight to behold.

For a more comprehensive overview of WSIKF, check out the daily reports on KiteLife.com.

Art Kites

Susie and I are now off to Two Rivers Wisconsin for a Labor Day fly. Then we come home three days before flying off to Dieppe France and then Cape Town, South Africa. Offices will be closed from the 7th to the 24th. We’ll do our best to check email between adventures.

Crown Sale: Flying 18 Crowns -- or at least trying to -- was a hoot! And maybe we can do even better next time! Want to join us??

List price on the 8 meter (26 foot) is $899. Order one before the end of September and we'll drop the price to $775. You can even choose the colors.

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