Museum to celebrate Amelia Earhart’s birthday

HONOLULU, Hawaii — The Pacific Aviation Museum is celebrating Amelia Earhart’s 116th birthday, Wednesday, July 24, and is asking visitors to join in the celebration in costume.

There will be goodie bags for the first 40 in costume (ages 18 and younger), plus free admission for families with at least one member dressed in Amelia Earhart and historic aviator costumes between 9 am to 1 pm. First, second and third place prizes will be awarded in the “Dress Like Amelia Earhart” costume contest at 1 pm.

Image: Amelia EarhartFamilies with those in costume are invited to board the Ford Island shuttle and come to the museum, free, from 9 am to 1 pm. Park free at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center. Museum officials note that no bags are allowed inside the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center or on the shuttle. Cell phone, wallet/small clutch, and camera are allowed, but no purses or bags. There is secure baggage storage for $3 per bag at the shuttle area.

At the museum, guests will view the museum’s “Amelia Earhart in Hawaii” photo exhibit, enjoy the festivities with cake and refreshments, and meet members of The Aloha Chapter of the Ninety-Nines International Organization of Women Pilots, of which Earhart was the first president. They’ll also meet members of Women in Aviation International.

Bring cameras to take pictures with the period re-enactors and an Amelia Earhart re-enactor, who will also be on hand to help instruct the museum’s “Flight School for Girls” that is in progress through the summer.

“This is a family event that brings the pioneers and heroes who have paved the way for women in aviation to our guests. We’re honored to have Hawaii’s women aviators participate and we’re honored to celebrate Amelia Earhart and her accomplishments,” said Museum Executive Director Kenneth DeHoff. “She has a very special connection with us here at Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor.”

Born July 24, 1897, Earhart has a special connection with the museum as she ground-looped her plane on takeoff on the historic Ford Island Runway, preventing her initial round-the-world flight attempt. Seventy-six years ago, Earhart took a leave of absence from her Purdue University job, hopped in her Purdue-funded “Flying Laboratory” and flew around the globe. Then she disappeared.

The latest 2012 expedition to recover her plane by The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) claims to yield new sonar images that reveal what appears to be the wing or fuselage of an aircraft matching the dimensions of Earhart’s Lockheed Electra, underwater off the coast of remote Nikumaroro Island in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. The tiny atoll is believed by some to be her final resting place.

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