AirVenture sign at Wittman Regional Airport. Photography courtesy of Nicole Lund.
AirVenture is the largest air show in the world and is held annually in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The show is just around the corner, taking place the last week of July. Whether you are camping or visiting for the day, the following items are necessary to pack.
1. Comfortable shoes
Arguably the most important item is a good pair of walking shoes. Leave your flips flops at home and bring a worn-in pair of tennis shoes. It is not uncommon to walk ten miles at AirVenture. If blisters or exhaustion occurs, there are plenty of volunteers with golf carts eager to help transport attendees. A comfortable pair of shoes will help you stay on your feet longer.
Wisconsin in July is typically warm and sunny. Take care of your skin by lathering up with sunscreen in the mornings. Make sure to put on more as the day progresses. Starting out the week with a gnarly sunburn can make the rest of the days less enjoyable.
As stated above, Wisconsin is sunny in July. Sunglasses are a necessity for the week. They will protect your eyes from UV rays and make it easier to stare up at the sky while watching the air performances.
Sunglasses are necessary when watching the airshow. Photography courtesy of Nicole Lund.
4. Layered clothing
Evenings and early mornings can get chilly in Oshkosh. Make sure to pack pants and a jacket. These layers can be shed during the day. The July sun can bring temperatures well into the 90s in the afternoons. Layering your clothes will keep you prepared for the changing temperatures.
5. Reusable water bottle
Hydration is key. Walking several miles in Wisconsin’s summer heat can lead to dehydration. There are many vendors that sell bottled water; however, these prices can be inflated. There are plenty of drinking fountains to fill reusable water bottles for free.
6. Umbrella/rain poncho
Oshkosh is typically sunny this time of year, however, there is always a big storm or two throughout the week. Make sure to bring an umbrella or rain poncho if you plan to be at the show for several days. If the forecast calls for rain on a specific day, make sure you bring that umbrella. Aircraft performers typically delay their performance during rainy weather. There is still plenty of vendors and workshops to check out on a rainy day.
7. Portable battery
AirVenture consists of long days and constantly taking pictures with cell phones. To keep a full charge on your phone, make sure to bring a portable battery to keep your phone charged throughout the day. The portable batteries are also convenient for those camping. This is one of few means of keeping your phone charged throughout the week.
8. Bug Spray
Bugs aren’t typically an issue during the day however, bug spray will come in handy during the evenings or at the Seaplane Base. All campers will want to bring bug spray. It is also smart to bring bug spray if you plan on attending the night air show. The night air show is one of the highlights of the week, however, the mosquitos start to bite after sundown. Another popular place to visit is the Seaplane Base. The base sits in a bay off Lake Winnebago. Mosquitos tend to hang out near the water even during daylight.
Seaplane base on lake Winnebago. Photography courtesy of Nicole Lund.
Packing for Oshkosh can be daunting, especially if you plan to camp the entire week. These items will keep you prepared and maximize your AirVenture experience. Whether this is your first or 50th AirVenture, everyone can benefit from bringing these items to the show.