The Aviation GeekFest was amazing yesterday. I got there a little early to enjoy what the Future of Flight has to offer. I was treated to seeing a Boeing 737 doing touch and go’s (can you guess what airline will be getting this aircraft?) from the Strato Deck.
It was nice meeting all the other aviation geeks. It is always great to be around other aviation-minded people and talk in length about the airline business.
After grouping up we were able to get a special VIP tour of the Boeing Factory up in Everett. It was hard because we weren’t allowed to bring in cameras or phones on the tour. Most of us are technology geeks and I wanted to pull out my iPhone about two dozen times to take pictures and Twitter, but I wasn’t able to. Harriet Baskas, who was also on the tour and aviation pro, was lucky enough to smuggle out a drawn picture of the Boeing 787 ZA001. After seeing her nice picture I was happy that Boeing was also kind enough to take pictures of our group during the tour (which I included on my Flickr).
Probably the best part of the tour was being able to drive out on the flight line. Normally the tour doesn’t do this, but we were all about 50 feet away from Boeing 787 ZA001. It had its strobes on and one engine spinning. Pretty much aviation geek heaven. I think most people had goose bumps being so close and I REALLY wanted to have my camera right then. The Boeing 787 just looks amazing that close in person and I can’t wait to see it take flight.
We then went into the Boeing facility where we could see the Boeing 777, 747-8, and 787 being built. It just amazed me how Boeing makes it look so simple to build some of the most complex machines in the world. Seeing all the parts and how complex the process is, it is incredible how these machines are able to fly for 20-40 years with almost no issues. Tour guide Mike (also a Airline Reporter reader, HI MIKE!) did an AMAZING job with his tour and left no question unanswered (except “hey, when is the 787’s first flight?” — although it was hinted it might be December 15th now).
Then it was back to the Future of Flight for some awesome pizza from Garlic Jim’s and beer compliments of Horizon Air. Although I didn’t win any of the raffle prizes (two VIP tickets to the 787 first flight, $250 Alaska Airlines gift certificates, an amazing looking model by Custom Models, and more) I was totally ok with that since it was a great event.
They hope to do it again in the future, so be sure to keep out a keen eye for invites (add everyone listed in the previous paragraph and me to your Twitter account to hear about the next event). A special thank you to everyone who made the event possible and I can’t wait until the next one!