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Written by Pete Lewis
Inaugural event held in June 2019


On June 1, the Longmont Innovation Center (IC) hosted its first Aerofest event. The day was filled with air shows, battles, races, vendor tents, and food trucks.

Many R/C pilots are makers at heart, and it felt much like SparkFun’s AVC. Best of all, it was great to see lots of youngsters getting interested in aeronautics. My 4-year-old son and I had a blast watching the airplanes, and he even had a chance to build his own laser-cut glider.




Two high school students building an airplane of their own design from scratch design during the event.


Aerofest was hosted by the IC's aeronautics program. They have many opportunities for high school students to learn to design, build, and fly their own aircraft. Through a variety of courses, they learn about the iterative design process and many aeronautic engineering principles.




Jake Marshall, head of the aeronautics team, launches one of his favorite DIY airplanes.

In addition to the many DIY laser-cut airframes flying at the event, there were also plenty of traditional RC airplanes out on display—most of these also flew at some point during the day. There were a couple scheduled aerobatics air shows and flying challenges, but at any given moment, you could look up and see someone flying around and performing an occasional loop or roll.





The STEM zone was a great opportunity for anyone to build a glider and to have some fun with flight. The tables were crowded and glue guns were hot. Kids were popping all the parts out of the foamboard and building them up as fast as possible.

The event was well attended, and much fun was had by all. The Longmont Innovation Center is planning on hosting the event again next year, so follow them on Twitter, YouTube, or their website to stay informed. Also, they do offer tours and have a retail store with glider kits available, so don't hesitate to reach out and arrange a visit. Next year, I am for sure bringing a couple of airplanes to fly. Hope to see you all there!

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