Har­vards fly in Re­mem­brance Day cer­e­monies

Tillsonburg News - - FRONT PAGE - Chris Ab­bott

Three his­toric Har­vard air­craft from Till­son­burg flew above Toronto’s Old City Hall on Nov. 11 par­tic­i­pat­ing in the city’s an­nual Re­mem­brance Day cer­e­mony.

Bjarni Tryg­gva­son, for­mer Cana­dian as­tro­naut and pres­i­dent of the all-vol­un­teer Cana­dian Har­vard Air­craft As­so­ci­a­tion, led the three-plane for­ma­tion leav­ing Till­son­burg about 10:15 a.m. Satur­day with fel­low CHAA pi­lots Scott McMaster and Percy Con­trac­tor at a speed of about 120 knots (222 km/h or 138 mph).

“Rea­son­ably nice weather,” said Tryg­gva­son. “Chilly, but nowhere near as cold as th­ese planes were de­signed to take. On the ground get­ting ready, it’s chilly, but just dress for it. It’s fine, the air­plane has a heater in it. Th­ese planes were used to train - through the war and af­ter the war - all year round in the Prairies. If the tem­per­a­ture is cold, pre-heat the air­planes. The planes we used were in­side a heated hangar overnight.”

Af­ter the Old City Hall tribute, the Har­vards flew over the East York Civic Cen­tre on Coxwell Av­enue, past the Vet­eran’s Wing at Sunnybrook Hospi­tal on Bayview Av­enue, and over IBEW Lo­cal 353 on Lawrence Av­enue East be­fore re­turn­ing to Till­son­burg about 12 p.m. con­tin­u­ing a CHAA tra­di­tion that goes back at least 18-20 years.

Funds raised will ben­e­fit both the Sta­tion and the Kinette Club of Till­son­burg.

“We have a unique home on the tour this year,” said Beard. “Seven Gables is join­ing us this year.”

Tra­di­tional stops in­clude the Sta­tion, where the Tea Room will serve cider and hot bev­er­ages. An­nan­dale Na­tional His­toric Site, nor­mally closed Satur­days, will be open to 9 p.m. on the 25th.

“It’s a unique sit­u­a­tion for them,” said Beard.

“The­atre Till­son­burg asked if they could be on the tour again this year, decked out for the holidays. They haven’t been on the tour in many years, so we said ‘sure’.”

Three more homes give them a to­tal of seven stops on the 2017 Tour.

“The nice thing about this year’s tour is that it won’t be piled on to a lot of other things that week­end,” said Beard. “Peo­ple will be able to take their time and look around.”

The Kinettes and The Sta­tion are grate­ful to ev­ery­one who put their homes on the tour along with those who spon­sored and do­nated door prizes to this event.

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