September 30
Weekend in Barcelona

Wow! What a party!!

Susie and I set down in Barcelona on Wednesday night and had nothing but fun until we few out Monday morning.

Maybe it was the huge box of chocolates waiting in our hotel room from the event organizer. Maybe it was being with good friends in a beautiful and fascinating city. Maybe it was the huge crowds at a fine festival. Maybe it was just being out and doing something in the face of all the awful news the week before. Or maybe it was just all the Sangria we drank.

Even a rain storm that blew through on Saturday, scattering crowds, drenching kites, and soaking us all to the skin couldn't dampen our spirits!

But still -- what were we thinking to try and fly big kites on that tiny field??

Barcelona Penguin Barcelona Penguin Barcelona Penguin

The beach was a mere 30 yards wide -- bordered on one side by splashing Mediterranean waves, and on the other by a crowded sidewalk and then a seawall, and then more people looking down on us. Even when the wind was perfect, things rolled over into the spectators. And they just seemed to like that even more!!

We used this as an opportunity to test out our new Peter Lynn Penguin. What a great crowd pleaser! He bobbed and bounced a few feet off the ground and just below all the folks on the upper deck. We didn't want to fly him higher in the constrained space and were amazed at how steady he performed on short lines and gusty ground winds. The new Pilot Kites are great for this!

The festival is organized by the Barcelona Estels Club and principles Ana and Josep Nieto. They don't speak English and we don't speak Spanish or Catalan, but we still consider them very close friends.

Egg Drop! Egg Drop! Egg Drop!

Now here is something new -- instead of the traditional candy-drops so popular in the USA, in Barcelona they did an EGG DROP. That's right -- they dressed the kids up in plastic cover-ups -- gave them little matching hard hats -- handed everyone a butterfly net -- and told them whoever caught the egg would win a prize. Pandemonium!!

And what is so bad about wrapping small spectators in plastic bags anyway??
I'M JUST KIDDING!

The festival also featured a five-piece mass ascension pin. Seems Josep brought the idea home from Long Beach last year. The first Mass ascension pins were issued by AKA in Wildwood back in 1994. Nice to see that the idea Jim Miller and I pioneered is getting around...

We finished out the trip with a quiet dinner at a sidewalk cafe in the shadow of Barcelona's central cathedral. Then we rose at the crack of dawn and flew home. Travel was no problem.

This weekend we are in Chicago doing a show for the Mayor's Kite Festival. We must be in good moods because the fields are covered with kids with freshly-made sled kites and we're having tons of fun helping them all out and don't seem to mind when they get into our bigger kites. We've flown the Octopus, Manta, Teddy Bear and Penguin. Or at least we've tried to fly them. The festival is nestled between two museums and the wind is awful. But life is good.

Airshow and Spikey Balls

It is a one day show and Susie plans a day of shopping on Sunday. Then we are off to Billings for the AKA. See you there!

GKPI Bears!

Hey! Hey! We've got bears!

We've just received our first shipment of mini-bears, licensed by Peter Lynn and manufactured by us. They look great!!

These are the ten foot models and sell for $400. But to get them out onto your local field, we are reducing the price through October 10 by $60. Buy a bear for $340. Just let us know what color you like best..

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