Rockets soar over Pawhuska airport
High Frontier 11 concluded three days of successful amateur rocket launches Sunday at Pawhuska Municipal Airport.
Model rocket flights began at 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday and continued throughout both days. A first-ever “Night Launch” was held Saturday night. The annual event is hosted by Tulsa Rocketry and sponsored by the Pawhuska Chamber of Commerce.
On Saturday afternoon, members of the Oklahoma City-area Piedmont Rocketry club launched a 16-foot Solar Flare Up that reached a flight altitude of more than 5,000 feet.
Special “drag race” events were held Saturday and Sunday.
Commemorative High Frontier Rocket Mail covers flown for the event showed the official cover postmarked at the Kennedy Space Center on April 12, 1981, to commemorate the flight of the STS-1. Proceeds from the sale of cover reproductions were donated to the Pawhuska Ministerial Alliance Food Bank.
A “Closest to the Buffalo” contest was held each day for young fliers and drawings were held for door prizes and rocket kits. Earlier in the week, kits were given out to local grade-school students as part of the Chamber’s effort to promote the event. Schools held coloring contests to determine who received the rocket kits.
Other featured flights at this year’s High Frontier event included: Paul Reed’s launch of a Full-scale HV Arcas – CTI K590 Dual Thrust; Hal Ellis with a 1/3-scale Black Brant VB – L1520, and Andrew Lathrop’s Dominator 4 – M1297.
Children under 18 (if accompanied by parents) were allowed to use the launch pads for free. Otherwise, there was a launching fee of $10 per day or $15 for the weekend. A steady steam of spectators turned out to watch the launches, a Chamber spokesperson said.
According to its mission statement, Tulsa Rocketry is “dedicated to the promotion and safe pursuit of hobby rocketry in all its forms. We encourage all interested people to enjoy the sport and hobby of rocketry.” As an area chapter of the Tripoli Rocketry Association, it holds monthly meetings to discuss construction, materials, techniques and other things related to rocketry.