2002-08-17 / Community

Come Fly A Kite At Riis Park

Come Fly A Kite At Riis Park

Once again, unidentified flying objects will be hovering over Rockaway’s Riis Park at Bay 9 by the flagpole in Gateway National Recreation Area on August 24 and 25 as the annual Rockaway Kite Festival takes to the sky. The festival will feature high-flying for the whole family on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free.

A new addition this year brings the 10th Annual New York Stunt Kite Championships to the festival. Top sport kite fliers from around the country will be competing in this kick-off event of the Eastern League Sport Kite Association season. The intensely judged competitions include individual and team competitions flying two and four line controllable kites in various fields on the site. Many of the competitions feature choreographed aerial routines to music making this an amazing spectator event.

In addition, guest kitemakers from the American Kiteflyers Association will be flying kites of all kinds and imaginable shapes and sizes. "The sky will be filled with creatures that fly." says Roger Chewning of Sky Festival Productions, the event coordinator.

Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, Liz Sulik, is excited about another new addition to Rockaway’s kite festival this year, a free Kid’s Kite Camp, which will include children’s activities from 12:30 to 3 p.m. each day. According to Sulik, the professional kiters conducting the "kids camp" will introduce the children to the wonderful world of kiting and the first 200 children to arrive will be able to construct, decorate and fly their own kites to take home as well as see and learn about many different kites and how they fly.

Visitors to the Kite Festival will see spectacular and colorful ground displays by regional kite clubs, fighter kite competitions, Japanese Battle (Rokkaku) kites and brilliantly colored giant kites flying high over the festival grounds visible for miles around. Additionally, beautiful kites painted by local Rockaway artists will be on display at the site and many additional kites will be raffled off during both days.

"Last year, the Kite Festival was a big success and we believe this annual event will grow in popularity attracting more and more kiters and visitors to Rockaway," said Sulik. "This is an event that showcases our beautiful beach peninsula and all that it has to offer visitors."

This premier event is being produced by Sky Festival Productions in collaboration with Gateway National Recreation Area, the Rockaway Chamber of Commerce and sponsored by Newsday, Keyspan, Port Authority of NY & NJ, American Airlines, Maximus, Multiviz Health Services and Benjamin Beechwood, LLC.

Kiters are invited to contact the Rockaway Chamber of Commerce to volunteer and to come fly a kite!!

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