NIC offers presentation on local aviation history


North Idaho College will offer “Aviation History of North Idaho,” at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 6 in Molstead Library’s Todd Hall.
 
The early history of aviation in North Idaho dates back to 1918 and the opening of Weeks Field, the current site of the Kootenai County Fairgrounds. Weeks Field was one of the first municipal airports in the United States. Later the “big field,” which is now the Coeur d’Alene Airport, grew from a 5,400-foot runway to 7,400 feet.
 
Pilot and longtime mechanic and aviation historian Gene Soper will present pictures, stories and history during the presentation. Soper was involved with the Henley Aerodrome in Athol, which was where barnstormers and air show pilots learned techniques and swapped stories. The aerodrome is now Silverwood Theme Park.
 
Soper began flying in 1946 in New Meadows, Idaho where he paid $9 an hour for flight lessons. At 24, Soper began crop dusting and was also an airplane mechanic, pilot and air show mechanic.
The presentation is sponsored by NIC’s Molstead Library as part of its history series.
 
The event is free and open to the public. However, because of the popularity of these programs and limited seating, attendees must call to reserve free, open seating tickets before the event. Unclaimed tickets will be available five minutes prior to the start of the presentation on a first-come, first-served basis.
 
Information: (208) 769-3355.
Gene Soper, pictured, will present "North Idaho Aviation History" at North Idaho College Feb. 6.


For More Information
NIC Molstead Library Assistant-Circulation Skip Kuck, (208) 769-3355

Posted: Friday, Feb. 2, 2007

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