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Ray's World Adventures 1998

Pierfest Sea and Air Show

Belmont Shores, Long Beach, CA - October 26, 1998

This was my third sponsored trip this kite season to sunny California. And if there is a favorite place in the kiting World for me, it has to be Belmont Shores, Long Beach, CA, where 85% of the time the winds blow at a perfect 8-10 mph.

I have said this many times to my kiting friends, every time I am in the UK and Europe? if they were to fly at Long Beach CA?. they would think they had died and gone to heaven... the beach has well packed pure white sand, 1,000 yards from the main road to the waters edge, and it runs as far as the eye can see, in both directions. A 10 foot black top road runs the full length of the beach roughly 200 feet from the main road, this is used for jogging walking. running, bicycle riding and roller blading. They never cease to amaze me, those beautiful California girls in there lovely out fits that they wear while roller blading, I can't figure out if they are inside trying to get out... or outside trying to get in!

I was sponsored to be part of the spectacular Sea & Air Show. I had my own 200x200 square foot arena to perform my all day multiple kite demonstrations. There was no shortage of spectators. In fact they turned out in the thousands for these two days of non-stop entertainment. There was some thing for every body. Spectacular Air show with Aerobatics and military demonstrations including the B-2 Bomber, and the F-11A Stealth Fighter, water sports, and over 175 Trade, Sports, Arts, Crafts collectible exhibits, plus great children's entertainment. Fun for the whole family right on the beach.

I had a great chance to show of my new Kestrels, and new T-2's and new tails from "Windependent". The weather was super. The temperature was in the high 80's and awesome winds at a steady 10mph. What a thrill it was for me, while I was performing my multiple kite ballets, to have the Stealth Fighter doing his performance over my head at the same time. The festival was a huge success. It was a two day extravaganza.

Just beyond Belmont Beach but in plain sight is docked the grandest ocean liner ever built the Queen Mary; she is a legend Steeped in history and tradition, During the 2nd World War she was a troopship known as "The Grey Ghost". She arrived at Long Beach in 1967 and was opened to the public in 1971, the Hotel Queen Mary as she is now called, boasts 365 original staterooms spanning 3 decks. The last time I stood looking in awe at this beautiful ship was on Southampton docks in England. I was 22 years old then. Who would have thought that 50 years later I would be touring this majestic piece of history from stem to stern, something which, in her hey Day, only the rich and famous could do. I wish to thank my sponsor Neil Tuthill for arranging this tour as a special thank you for a job well done. It was indeed a great way to finish off yet another great sponsored trip to Sunny California.

Thank you for listening,

Ray




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