It’s Not Really A Space Ship

One of the more unique aircraft at the National Air Force Museum never flew so well but it’s an incredible prototype of a post war dream.

It’s called the Avro Canada VZ-9AV Avroca, a terrible name for a ridiculously cool aircraft. Its shiny silver aluminum siding and disc shape resemble something out of a fifties sci-fi movie. You half expect martians to wave from the glass canopied cockpit.

But it’s not a spaceship.

Instead it’s a prototype of what they considered a first step toward a supersonic fighting jet capable of vertical takeoff and landing. Canada originated the project but dropped it when it became too expensive. The US picked it up in 1955 with hopes it could replace helicopters and light observation craft.

Sadly, it was “aerodynamically unsound” according to a museum sign but it’s still one of the coolest pieces in a facility full of amazing aircraft.

Be sure to look for it if you go!

Road Trip: National Air Force Museum

Our governor has been encouraging Ohioans to live well and safely in the age of Covid. We cannot all stay home forever but, with no vaccine in sight and cases spiking in some communities, it is difficult to know how to do this

My July travel plans were scrapped (I promise to stop whining about this) but I did take off a couple days to do some socially distanced wandering. One day, I drove some backroads a couple of hours from here. Another day I spent with my dad visiting the National Air Force Museum in Dayton.

Like everything else, it had been closed since March and just recently reopened with a lot of changes including a new traffic flow, cleaning procedures, sanitizing stations and a mask requirement. It wasn’t at all crowded and the place is cavernous so it is very easy to walk around without coming close to anyone else. I felt safer here than I do at the grocery.

This museum is spectacular. It is several buildings packed full of aircraft as well as some photos and artifacts to help tell their stories. We had visited together a couple of years ago when they dedicated the Memphis Belle and had a such a good time we wanted to return on a less populated day.

There are some specific stories I’ll want to focus on but, for today, here are a handful pictures.

Remember, this museum is free. Water fountains are turned off so be sure to take your own sealed clear plastic water bottle. They also have a cafe where you can grab lunch or snacks.

You can make a day of it or even a couple of days, depending on how much you wish to dwell over the exhibits. We arrived just after opening at 9 a.m. and it was close to 2 when we left.

A lot of the interactive stuff is closed right now but it’s still a great place to take kids who love aviation.

Want to visit? Here’s a link to their website. They also have a really fun presence on Facebook and Instagram.