Flying for Fun

National Air and Space Museum
Independence Avenue and 6th Street, SW
Washington, DC

Special Exhibitions, Gallery 104, 1st Floor, West Wing Floor Plan

Enjoyment of flight can come in many forms, even without a pilot's license, as the objects in this exhibition illustrate.

On view are:

  • Boomerangs: 3-bladed "throwing stick", a King Billy's Hook, an R-shaped one, and one that does not return
  • Plastic Flying Disks: numerous contemporary models, as well as their predecessor, a baking tin from the Frisbie Pie Company
  • Kites: one donated to the Smithsonian in 1876 by China, a 3-foot test model used by Secretary Langley, and one used by the weather bureau for almost 40 years
  • Hang Gliders: brightly-striped Cumulus 10 Rogallo-wing and a Valkyrie fixed-wing model
  • Sailplanes: a Schweizer I-35A and an Arlington Sisu 1A

Also, a hot-air balloon, model aircraft built as a hobby, photographs, documents, and silent films are included.