Dear Members and Friends of Wings Over the Rockies:
As we embrace winter and all of what 2015 has in store, we are warmed by the memory of twenty special events that helped us celebrate our 20th anniversary throughout the month of December. Yes, twenty years ago—December 1, 1994—dedicated volunteers opened the doors of Wings Over the Rockies to visitors for the very first time.
Many of those early volunteers are still part of the Wings family, and they joined in the celebration of our progress and potential. In a first-ever-of-its-kind display, founding director Peter Luce and 17 year old Wings Aerospace Explorer Brianna Brock flipped the switch to illuminate 52,000 LED lights on our elevated B-52, standing as an iconic sentinel beside the main entrance. Visitors see our heritage not as a static artifact, but a dynamic symbol of our uplifting mission to inspire and educate through flight.
Earlier in the day, a new era was opened at Centennial Airport when Board members and Wingspan Steering Committee members broke ground ceremoniously on a 15 acre site which will host the Exploration of Flight education and technology center. Over $9 million has been raised to begin phased construction in April of the center’s largest feature, the Blue Sky Aviation Gallery. Our Spreading Wings educational outreach mission will expand from our own flight-based facility, complementing the heritage alive and well at Lowry.
Like a twenty year old, Wings looks to the future with excitement as well as respect for its upbringing in a family of loyal friends and supporters. Our development as a two site museum institution will follow a path taken by the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum, as well as the Museum of Flight in Seattle and San Diego Air & Space Museum. Each site will complement the other, based upon unique strengths (flying vs static, research vs restoration, contemporary vs traditional, etc.).
As we continue to grow, there are more opportunities than ever to be part of the Wings family. This very special 20th anniversary year will include special events, exhibits, programs and experiences that you won’t want to miss.
Be part of our celebration. Join us!
Gregory J. Anderson