CREATED Oct. 10, 2012
PALM SPRINGS--A parade of nearly 100 planes made their way through the streets of downtown from the Palm Springs International Airport to the Convention Center Wednesday. It's part of the 2012 Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association Summit, one of the largest aviation tradeshows in the nation.
"Usually we're taxi-ing and it's pretty boring there's nothing else around you, now we're taxi-ing in a parade where you're actually waving at people and people are waving back and the kids are having a lot of fun so it was quite the unique experience," Pilot Mark Stauffer of Arion Aircraft said.
On-lookers lined the road. Some found themselves blown away by propeller wind. Others were taken a back by the sight of planes instead of cars on the street.
"To see these aircraft come by the house is just an amazing experience," said Palm Springs resident Henry Weiss. "It's so out of place when you're used to seeing cars on the street and now you're seeing aircraft so just wonderful"
The parade of airplanes had everything from the smallest turbo prop to World War II planes to luxury liners.
It's the largest convention held in the city of Palm Springs. 12,000 AOPA members; pilots, owners and aircraft enthusiasts flying into the desert for an exclusive look at some of the world's coolest planes.
"There's actually nowhere else in the world that this happens," Katie Pribyl, Vice President of Communication for AOPA said. "This is very unique to AOPA and very unique to Palm Springs so we're just very happy to be here."
The streets looked more like a busy runway with pilots showing off their wings as they turned the city into a tarmac.
The planes will be on display outside the Convention Center in Palm Springs until Saturday.
A tip for anyone traveling in and out of the city especially to the airport. Starting Wednesday through October 15th, Kirk Douglas Road will be closed to all vehicle traffic to accommodate the planes, so if you need to get to the airport you're asked to use the entrance on El Cielo.