Father’s Day is Aviation Day in Redding


Father’s Day is this coming Sunday, June 19, which means the annual Aviation Day returns to Benton Airfield in Redding.

Aviation Day starts with a hearty breakfast of ham, eggs and pancakes from 7 to 11 a.m., which costs $7 for adults and $5 for kids 5 t o 12 and which usually attracts 700 to 800 people. Rides will be available in a turbine helicopter from Air Shasta and fixed-wing airplanes from Hillside Aviation. Plus, numerous aircraft and radio-controlled airplanes will be on display.

“We usually have quite a variety of experimental, light sport and production aircraft,” said Herb Zuidema, of the Redding chapter of the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), which helps organize the event.

The Coast Guard will not return for this year’s Aviation Day. However, helicopters from the California Highway Patrol, REACH and PHI Air Medical will be on display, as will numerous aircraft owned by local individuals and people flying in for the event. A restored 1946 Ercoupe will be one of the highlights, according to Zuidema.

Proceeds from the event go to the EAA’s “Young Eagles” project, in which licensed pilots provide rides and other aviation exposure to children and teenagers. There is a need for more pilots from the civilian world, as more and more military-trained pilots retire, Zuidema said.

The Hillside Aviation Hangar on Airpark Drive serves home base for Aviation Day, with parking available to the north and south. While there is a charge for breakfast and aircraft rides, there is no fee to check out the displays and watch a variety of experimental and historic airplanes land and take off. The event runs from 7 a.m. until 2 p.m.

View Benton Field Airpark in a larger map.

On today’s A La Carte menu:

Crawdads for dad’s day … The Crawdad Festival is scheduled for its second year in Red Bluff this weekend. For years, the festival the Delta town of Isleton was home to the Crawdad Festival, but the good times eventually rolled a little too far, too fast and eventually overwhelmed the placed. R Wild Horse Ranch in Platina acquired the festival and moved it to the Tehama District Fairgrounds in Red Bluff. Crawdads are not so plentiful in Red Bluff, but the fairgrounds offers plenty of room for the event’s food vendors, music, carnival rides and other entertainment. The festival is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, June 17 and 18, and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Visit the Crawdad Festival website for more information.

Free money … Experts are scheduled to explain credits available to local businesses for hiring additional employees and buying equipment, as well as business expense deductions during a workshop from 10 a.m. to noon on June 23 at Shasta Builders Exchange, 2985 Innsbruck Drive, Redding. The builders exchange, Shasta College and Shasta County Economic Development Corporation are among the event sponsors. Advance registration is required. Call (530) 242-7635 for more information or to sign up.

Taggers under pressure … The Redding Police Department has received a $6,610 grant to purchase a hot water pressure washer for the graffiti eradication program. The money comes from the Shasta Regional Community Foundation’s McConnell Foundation Fund. Among the new favorite targets of the spray-paint-and-Sharpie set are the new Cypress Avenue Bridge, and the new Dana-to-Downtown bike path. The graffiti hotline, by the way, is (530) 245-6211.

Junior lifeguard training … Whiskeytown National Recreation Area is offering junior lifeguard and waterfront lifeguard training for kids 10 to 17 years old on Mondays and Wednesdays from June 27 through August 3. Participants need to be in good shape and be able to swim 400 yards in 12 minutes or less. The junior lifeguard program is intended to teach kids water and beach safety, and to improve their aquatic skills. The waterfront lifeguard training teaches kids how to respond to aquatic emergencies. Sessions are scheduled for 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Brandy Creek Beach. For additional information or to register, contact lead lifeguard Debra Olson at (530) 241-5302 or simply show up on June 27.


shigley-mugshotPaul Shigley is a freelance journalist based in Western Shasta County, CA, and would like to think he can swim 400 yards in 12 minutes. He may be reached at pauls.anewscafe@gmail.com.

A News Cafe, founded in Shasta County by Redding, CA journalist Doni Greenberg, is the place for people craving local Northern California news, commentary, food, arts and entertainment.

Paul Shigley

has been a professional journalist since 1987. For 12 years, he served as editor or senior editor of California Planning & Development Report, a statewide trade publication for land use planners, real estate development professionals and attorneys. Prior to that, he worked as a reporter or editor at newspapers in Redding, Grass Valley, Napa and Calistoga. Shigley's work also has appeared in the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, Planning magazine, Governing magazine, California Law Week, National Speed Sport News and elsewhere. In addition, he is co-author of Guide to California Planning, a college text and reference book, and is currently working on a book for the American Planning Association about the Bay Delta and California water resources. A graduate of California State University, Sacramento, Shigley has contributed to A News Cafe since 2009. He and his wife, Dana, live in western Shasta County.