Barnstorming pilots offer public rides

Thomas Wells | Daily Journal David Mars talks with guests as they view his vintage 1920's bi-plane at Tupelo Regional Airport on Monday. He and second pilot Ted Davis will offer rides in the two bi-planes beginning Wednesday.

Thomas Wells | Daily Journal
David Mars talks with guests as they view his vintage 1920’s bi-plane at Tupelo Regional Airport on Monday. He and second pilot Ted Davis will offer rides in the two bi-planes beginning Wednesday.

By Dennis Seid

Daily Journal

TUPELO – Members of the American Barnstormers Tour will be in Tupelo this week, offering rides in their vintage biplanes.

David Mars of Jackson and Ted Davis of Wisconsin were at the Tupelo Regional Airport Monday morning to get the word out about their planes, the tour and the rides.

“We’re here to keep aviation history alive,” said Mars.

The duo will be in Russellville, Ala., this weekend, but were swinging through Tupelo and Oxford on Monday.

Both pilots will be back in Tupelo Wednesday and Thursday with their planes and offer rides, which cost $70 per passenger and last about 15 minutes. The rides will begin around noon each day and end around 6 p.m.

The two planes are vintage 1929 aircraft that have been fully restored.

Mars flies a Travel Air 4000, while Davis has a New Standard Model D-25.

Mars pilots his plane through Vintage Air Tour (www.americanbarnstormerstour.com) from Jackson, while Davis is the pilot-owner of the New Standard through Biplane Rides of America (www.biplaneridesofamerica.com).

The Travel Air name is historic in its own right. The Travel Air Manufacturing Co. was founded in 1925 in Wichita, Kan., by aviation pioneers Clyde Cessna, Walter Beech an Lloyd Steerman. Within four years, the company had to liquidate due to the Great Depression, and its business was bought by Curtis-Wright Corp.

The New Standard D-25 was a five-seat agricultural plane that also was specifically built for barnstorming.

dennis.seid@journalinc.com

  • Tupelo_Guy

    I wouldn’t even pay $70 just to fly for 15 minutes.

  • DownGoesBrown

    Sounds fun, and it would be pretty cool to see Oxford from the air on a game weekend, but $70 for a 15-minute ride borders on the absurd.

  • Dukes909

    We did a helicopter ride in the Appalachians last year: $50 for 15 minutes. They started the clock when they started the rotor. It was basically get in, go up a little bit, see some tree tops, land, over. Not worth it.

  • Guest

    Which dates are correct? This article says they’re offering rides today and tomorrow. The article at Biz Buzz says they’re going to be offering rides next Tuesday and Wednesday.

    • http://djournal.com/ DJournal.com

      It’s today and tomorrow. Sorry for the confusion.