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Wings & Wheels Heritage Festival at Downsview Park, May 29-30

Wings & Wheels Heritage Festival at Downsview Park, May 29-30 Celebrates Important Canadian Anniversaries with Aircraft and Vehicle Displays
· 100th Anniversary of the First Aircraft Flight Over Toronto and Toronto’s First Aviation Festival
· 70th anniversary opening of first wartime RCAF Flying Training School in Toronto in May 1940
· 65th anniversary of VE Day, marking the end of the War in Europe
· 70th anniversary of first successful helicopter flight in North America
· Free admission for Canadian Military Veterans

TORONTO – May 25, 2010 - The 5th annual Wings & Wheels Heritage Festival at Downsview Park, Toronto, on Saturday and Sunday, May 29-30, 2010 will commemorate important Canadian aviation anniversaries and honour Canada’s veterans with a fly-in exhibition of more than 60 vintage, military and modern aircraft, displays of more than 150 classic cars and vehicles, and plenty of fun-filled activities for children.

The Festival provides aviation and automobile fans with a rare opportunity to view aircraft and classic cars up close, without fences, in the heart of Toronto. Aircraft will fly into Downsview Airport throughout the Festival weekend, and classic car and motorcycle clubs and vehicle owners from throughout southern Ontario will participate in a two-day Show & Shine event. For tickets, fly-in and vehicle registration see www.wingsandwheelsfestival.com.

Legendary hockey player Johnny Bower will be attending the festival on Saturday, May 29 from Noon - 2:00 p.m. to sign memorabilia.

The festival supports the Canadian Air & Space Museum, a non-profit charity.

Media Preview - Thursday May 27, 2010

A press conference and media preview will be held at 10:00 a.m., Thursday May 27, 2010 at the Canadian Air & Space Museum, Downsview Park, Toronto. Aircraft and vehicles will be on display.

Toronto’s 100th Anniversary Aviation Festival

This year’s Festival celebrates the 100th anniversary of the first aviation festival in Toronto at the Tretheway Farm in 1910 and the first flight over Toronto by Frenchman Count Jacques de Lesseps in his Bleriot XI monoplane “Le Scarabee” on July 13, 1910.

The festival will feature a 100-year showcase of Canadian aviation achievements, including a replica of the first aircraft to fly in Canada – the 1909 Silver Dart. This replica built in Welland, Ontario recreated Canada’s first flight in Baddeck, Nova Scotia last year.

Confirmed Festival highlights include a rare Cold War era Soviet Air Force Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15 jet fighter like those flown in the Korean War (1950-1953), a Canadian Armed Forces supersonic CF-18 jet fighter, helicopters, business jets and airliners, plus the public debut of the newest light aircraft developed in Ontario, the five-seat Expedition 350, built in Parry Sound.

In celebration of the 100th anniversary, the public will have an opportunity fly over the City of Toronto in a Cessna 172 light aircraft ($40), Bell JetRanger helicopter ($60) or a Second World War RCAF Harvard trainer.

Wartime Training Scheme Celebrated with Vintage Aircraft Fly-In

One of Canada’s greatest contributions to the Second World War was training aircrew to fly the fighters and bombers that helped win the war. Seventy years ago this week, on May 26, 1940, the first of the wartime RCAF flying training schools in Canada opened in Toronto. Enthusiastic young men just out of high school began to learn to fly and crew the wings of war. When the No. 1 Air Observer School opened at Malton Airport, it marked the practical beginning of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP) which by April 1945 had trained a total 131,553 aircrew.

To celebrate the wartime training plan, the Festival will host a fly-in of wartime RCAF training aircraft, including a homecoming of de Havilland DH 82C Tiger Moth biplanes built at Downsview Airport during the war.

Free Admission for Canadian Veterans in Commemoration of 65th Anniversary of VE Day

This year’s festival falls on the 65th anniversary of VE Day, May 8, 1945, when the war ended in Europe and our veterans began their journey back to Canada.

All Canadian military veterans and serving members of the Canadian Armed Forces (in uniform) will be admitted to the 2010 Festival for FREE.

At the festival, visitors can be able to see one of the largest “veterans” to return from Europe in 1945, a four-engine Avro Lancaster aircraft built by Victory Aircraft Limited in Toronto, which was assigned to a Canadian bomber squadron in England. Lancaster FM104 is being restored as a memorial to the 10,000 Canadians who died on bomber missions.

On Saturday, May 29, the Highway of Heroes Salute Ride and Repatriation Memorial Drive and Rally Event from CFB Trenton along Highway 401 will terminate at Downsview Park.

70th Anniversary Helicopter Fly-In

On May 20, 1940, Russian-American aircraft designer Igor Sikorsky made the first free successful free flight of a helicopter in North America.

In celebration of this milestone, helicopter owners and operators from the Toronto area have been invited to display their helicopters at the festival.

Tickets & Getting to the Festival

Festival hours are Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sunday 10 am- 5 p.m. Downsview Park is 4 km north of Highway 401, off Sheppard Avenue in North York. Direct bus service to Downsview Park and the Festival is available from at the Downsview subway station.

Tickets prices for the general public are: Families $30 (2 adult + 2 youth), Adults $15, Seniors/Youth $10, Children 5 and under free. For ticket information, directions and festival hours, see www.wingsandwheelsfestival.com .

About the Canadian Air & Space Museum

The Canadian Air & Space Museum in Downsview Park in Toronto tells the distinctly Canadian stories of aerospace and airline history and innovation, and recounts the stories of people and organizations connected with these innovations. The Museum showcases Canadian innovations and achievements, linking the ‘past – present – future’. The Museum contains notable artifacts and aircraft, showcasing the development of aviation and space innovations in Canada, including a full-scale, museum-quality replica of the magnificent Avro Arrow. For information on tickets, directions, donations and Museum hours, call 416-638-6078 or visit www.casmuseum.org.

Media Contact

Kenneth Swartz, Media Relations - 416-836-7094 or kennethswartz@me.com

- 30-

Kenneth I. Swartz
Aeromedia Communications for Wings & Wheels Heritage Festival

Mobile: 416-836-7094
E-mail: kennethswartz@me.com
Web Site: www.aeromediacommunications.com

Kenneth I. Swartz     5/25/2010


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