Five Super Hot Gift Ideas for Father's Day.
Above: Pilot Dave Hadfield takes his father Roger aloft in the P-40 Kittyhawk. As a member of Vintage Wings of Canada, your father can have the same experience. Photo: Peter Handley
We've all seen it a hundred times. A young, breathless football player pouring water over his head on the bench at the Super Bowl Game after running back a kick-off 96 yards for a touchdown, looks straight into the camera and shouts "Hi Mom, that was for you!". A toothy, maple-leaf festooned athlete raises his skis over his head for the sponsors and mouths the words "I love you Mom" for all the nation to see.
All across Canada, mothers swoon with delight, while fathers (who actually taught these kids to skate, ski, shoot, pass, punt, catch and ride) sigh heavily, close their eyes briefly, rise to their feet and head to the beer fridge, with not a little sadness in their hearts. When it comes to national displays of parental love, the score is Moms 100, Dads zero.
This Father's Day, Vintage Wings of Canada is providing you with the opportunity to make it all up to him — to even the score so to speak. We have a full range of gift ideas that will not only make your aviation-minded dear old dad think you are the best of your siblings, but will help keep the venerable warbirds of Vintage Wings flying and Canada's Aviation Heritage alive. Pick any gift, whether it is a flight in an Honest-to-Pete Second World War legend or a hat that will make him feel as cool as Steve McQueen, and your father is going to be happy. Maybe you don't know who Steve McQueen is, but your dad does.
Here are the top ten signs you should be buying your Pop his Father's Day gift at the Gear-Up Store or giving him an aviation memory to last a life time.
10. He thinks Mikey McBryan on Ice Pilots NWT
is a fine actor and Ariel Tweto on Flying Wild Alaska
is a babe (which she is, just sayin').
9. He hides a copy of Soviet Night Fighter Camouflage Schemes - 1941-43, Volume VI
inside his copy of Hustler
so that you won't see him reading it.
8. He proudly displays his “Honourable Mention - Canadian Bush Planes” award from the International Plastic Modellers Association (Northern Ontario) convention in Timmins in 1978 next to his wedding photo from the same year.
7. The convention was also his honeymoon.
6. He's building a third Challenger Ultralight in the basement, but the roof has been leaking for five years.
5. He has both seasons of Baa Baa Black Sheep - Directors Cut
on DVD and calls his dog Pappy
4. He has Airliners.net
bookmarked on his computer.
3. He sits in the basement at his Flight Sim station hand-flying the Los Angeles-Tokyo route in a Boeing 747SP... Real time... As in he never leaves the monitor for 13 hours.
2. He logs that Flight Sim time.
1. When you told him you had a terminal disease, he was gazing distractedly up at a passing airplane, saying "That's nice dear... "
When my daughters were young, Father's Day was a special day indeed. I would lounge about in bed, pretending to be asleep, listening to the clatter of dishes and cutlery, the beeping of microwaves and obvious whispers and stifled giggles as my 8 and 11 year old girls prepared a breakfast of toast, coffee, melon, bacon and eggs. The best thing about those Father's Days was the memory of the joy and excitement that rose up the stairs with the smell of toast and coffee, the memory of their proud faces and their smiles as they entered the bedroom with a loaded tray and the memory of my "surprise" as I pretended to be woken from a delicious slumber. The best gifts are in fact the memories.
Now that you are full grown and your father is retired, you wonder how you can create memories for him still. If your father has an abiding love of history, a passion for all things aviation, is a pilot, an aerogeek, a plane spotter, a plastic modeller, a retired aviator, or a veteran who is just now beginning to relate his experiences from the war, Vintage Wings of Canada has a wide selection of gift ideas for this Father's day, ranging from $2,000.00 to $10.00.
Five Gift Ideas from Vintage Wings
1. A Ride in a real Warbird
At $2,000.00 for 20 minutes, this memory-to-last-a-lifetime is pricey, but then so was the college education your father paid for, or the 24 years of free room and board you never thought twice about or your dad's Dodge Dart GTS that you wrote off with just a shrug and an apology. Riding in the back of one of the Vintage Wings of Canada warbirds means that your father will have to become a member too and this will cost an additional $125. Once he is a member, you can then sponsor a flight of his favourite aircraft and he can fly along as a copilot. For more information about our Member Ride/Copilot Program, visit the rides section of our website Photo: Prince George of Mayer
Dancing with "Lizzie". At only $600.00 for a 20 minute aerial journey into history, a flight in the extremely rare Westland Lysander is the best value in a warbird ride anywhere. Only three "Lizzies" are in flying condition worldwide, and you can elevate your father to near-god status among his aero-buddies, as he becomes one of only a handful of men alive today to ever fly in one. Of course, if he hates to fly... you can always get him a Lysander T-shirt from the Gear-Up store. Also available for rides at a considerably more affordable price are the de Havilland Tiger Moth, Fairchild Cornell and Fleet Finch. Photo: Peter Handley
2. A Membership in a Real Warbird Family
Membership has its privileges. As a member of the Vintage Wings of Canada family, your dad receives a Membership/ID card, shoulder patch, commemorative pin, discounts on Vintage Wings gear, access to special members-only events, members access to the Vintage wings facility at all operating hours, as well as benefits at the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum, Rockcliffe Flying Club, Aviation World and Canada Aviation and Space Museum. For a full list of Members Benefits visit the Membership Site. The cost is only $125.00 per year, and the one largest benefit is that your dad will be a member of an elite group of vintage aviation aficionados respected the world over. Photo: Peter Handley
3. A Real Warbird Ball Cap
Paul Kissmann (left) was voted Sexiest Pilot Alive, 2010 by a panel of Russian supermodels at Pilot Quarterly. First Runner Up for the the honour was Michael Potter (right), who will fill in for Kissmann should he be unable to carry out his duties. Why were these two hunks chosen out of more than 1,000 pilots from over 120 countries? Because both sport the Vintage Wings of Canada Cool-Max baseball cap. Now your father can reap the benefits - comfort, sun protection, and the stares of admiring women and jealous men everywhere. At $20.00 for the Cool-Max version and $25.00 for the max-cool, full-back, fitted ball cap, these aero-fashion must-haves will put the swag in your father's swagger and the zip in his flight suit. You can purchase them on-line or you can visit our newly opened Gear-Up store at the hangar where store manager Wanda Kowalski will fit you up nicely. Photo: Peter Handley
4. Real Cool Warbird Shirts and Swag
Our new Gear-Up Store has a full line of killer t-shirts, hoodies, polos, hats and more - all designed for maximum aero-studliness. Your father will be proud to wear one - especially if it is of his favourite airplane. At just $25.00 each, these shirts make the perfect gift - so why not buy him two or three? Photo: Peter Handley
5. Real Warbirds in Action
There are those who might not find the time over the next five days to purchase Dad a gift and would rather give him a card with an I.O.U in it. Well, here's the thing... you can promise to take him to the Gatineau en Vol/ Wings over Gatineau Air Show this September 17th. At just $10.00 a ticket, he and you can spend the day together among warbirds and vintage aircraft. For more on this fast-growing spectacle, visit the Wings over Gatineau sub-site. Photo: Peter Handley