Air Show in Kraków
On June 27-28, 2015 (Saturday-Sunday), the eleventh Malopolska Aviation Picnic took place at the Polish Aviation Museum. The train of fun was, as usual, the oldest airport in the Republic of Poland - Rakowice-Czyżyny Airport. Historic base of the 2nd Air Regiment, and at the same time the second largest Polish airport from the interwar period. Currently, the largest and best aviation museum in Europe. This year (2015) the picnic was visited by 50,000 spectators, aviation enthusiasts. As every year, whole families with small children came. In addition to the aircraft, there were traditionally reconstruction groups and presentations of historical military equipment. There were also catering and commercial stands as well as attractions for children.
This year the weather was good and it was possible to implement the entire program. There was a high base of clouds. For photographers, unfortunately the light was not favorable and they did not take much good photos.
This year, the star of the shows was the Latvian band Baltic Bees (Bałtycke Pszczoły), which was founded in 2008 by Valery Sobolev. The group flies Czechoslovak (now Czech) L-39 C Albatros aircraft, which have been properly prepared for the role of aerobatic aircraft. As the name suggests, the planes received an impressive navy blue and yellow paint. The team has already presented in Rzeczpospolita during the Air Show Radom 2013, and at Aerofestival 2015 in Poznań. In Krakow, the team performed a complete set of six machines. The planes were based at Balice Airport.
The second star of the picnic was the Polish band Orlik. The team was established in 1998, and its base is Radom Airport. Its members are officers and instructors from the School of Eaglets. From the very beginning, the team has been flying the PZL-130 TC-1 Orlik turboprop school planes. From 2007 to 2012, the team gradually switched to the latest version of this PZL-130 TC-II Orlik aircraft. Since 2014, the band's performance has been commented on by one of its members for the audience; the instructor's pilot, which greatly increases the attractiveness of the approximately 20-minute performance. The planes were based at Balice Airport.
In the air, we could see many planes that came in large numbers to Krakow. Was: Retro Sky Team Group (an unusual retro show from the times of the Great World War), Polish aerobatic group Żelazny, Polish aerobatic group FireBirds existing since 2014, Polish team 3AT3, Su-31 (Jurgis Kairys), XA-41 (Artur Kielak) , TS-11 Iskra bis D (Sławomir Hetman), CASA C-295, Mi-8, PZL W-3 Sokół, An-2 SP-MLP "Wienczyk", TS-8 Bies, RWD-5 R SP-LOT ( pilot Józef Wójtowicz), Jak-12 SP-AWD, Extra-300 L (Robert Kowalik), Jak-18, Piper Cup, Tiger Moth, Boeing Stearman, PZL M-20 Mewa SP-TUB, PZL-110 Koliber and others. There were paratroopers and paragliders (rags). There was a lot going on in the sky.
The event turned out to be very successful. The commentator, as every year, was Mr. Jan Hoffmman. Huge aviation enthusiast. A man of great aviation knowledge. He can talk about aviation in an interesting and witty way, often revealing the backstage of aviation cuisine. It is a pity that Mr. Jan does not comment on the Air Show in Radom.
The admission ticket to the Picnic for PLN 20 (normal) was at the same level as the year before. That's good. However, I have some observations: Due to the huge number of active participants of the Picnic, much more space was taken for the stands than last year. As a result, there was much less space for the audience. This made it much more difficult to observe the aircraft in the stands and in the air. It was all acceptable, if not for a large number of cars jostling every now and then among thousands of spectators.
Written by Karol Placha Hetman