1National Aviation Day- August 19  (in honor of the birthday of aviator Orville Wright)

Fun Flights Biplane Rides is celebrating National Aviation Day – with a double header! For the first twenty flights purchased from August 19 onwards, Fun Flights will provide one adult and one youth pass to the unique San Diego Air and Space Museum located in Balboa Park. It’s a perfect combination to experience aviation history and inspire the next generation of pilots.

Orville and Wilbur Wright were pioneer aviators in the United States. Orville was the first person to successfully fly an airplane on December 17, 1903 at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. This inaugural flight changed our skies forever! President Franklin D. Roosevelt created this special day in 1939 with a Presidential Proclamation!

Fun Flights Biplanes Rides
. . . flying like it used to be with helmet and goggles in the fresh air over San Diego County. Two passengers sit side by side in the front cockpit while our pilot flies from the rear cockpit (helmet and goggles provided)!

2Fun Flights operates at McClellan-Palomar Airport in Carlsbad and are currently highlighted on the Travel Channel’s program “Bikinis and Boardwalks” featuring fun activities along San Diego’s North Shore! 


An extra treat at Fun Flights – we take complimentary photos and share with you via email. Our current prices start at $239 total for two people for thirty minutes in the air, combined weight of two passengers not to exceed 400 lbs.

*Purchase your flight and one adult and one youth museum pass will be presented to you!4r


James, Ed and Ray Knaup – Aviation Pioneers!

November is National Aviation History Month and the Fun Flights Biplane N-9872 has an extensive history since it was built in May of 1929. As the Wisconsin Aviation Hall of Fame Induction Event is this Saturday, we are jumping to the fourth owners of N-9872.

The Knaup Brothers ( James, Ed and Ray) are to be inducted in the Wisconsin Aviation Hall of Fame on October 25, 2014. True aviation pioneers, the Knaup Brothers began flying in 1925 and started Midwest Airways in September 1927. They offered flight training, aerial photography, air parcel service and rides for airport visitors. According to the Milwaukee Sentinel, dated June 7,1961, they serviced Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis, Wiley Post’s Winnie Mae, taught the African explorer Frank “Bring ‘Em Back Alive” Buck how to fly in addition to 2,000 civilians and also turned out 3,000 military pilots for WWII. In 1932 they flew The Spirit of 3.2 to Washington with a cargo of Milwaukee beer in celebration of the repeal of prohibition using instruments to fly through the night, relatively new at the time!

Edward Knaup signs the Purchase Agreement for N9872 - Nov 2, 1931!

Edward Knaup signs the Purchase Agreement for N9872 – Nov 2, 1931!

"NC-9872" License/Registration

“NC-9872” License/Registration

In late 1931, NC-9872 was purchased by Midwest Airways who brought this Travel Air to Milwaukee County Airport. This airport was operated by Thomas Hamilton who founded Hamilton Aero Manufacturing Company and later merged with Standard Steel to form the famous Hamilton-Standard propeller company. We have attached some copies of 9872’s registration document along with a photo of the Fun Flights Biplane with its current propeller . . . a Hamilton-Standard!

Hamilton Standard Propeller currently on N9872

Hamilton Standard Propeller currently on N9872

Thar she blows!

Go whale watching in a boat and you’ll see spouts and maybe flukes. Fly with us and you’ll see whales!

Flower Fields bird’s eye view

The best view of the world famous Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch. Breathtaking view, and then you also get to fly along the beach.

Where Dreams Take Wing

The Real McCoy

The tachometer in our bird is original equipment, and the same as the one used by Charles Lindbergh when he flew across the pond. The classic art deco Travel Air Manufacturing Company logo is silk screened on the face for all to see. It reminds us, every time we set the power, that we’re really flying a time machine, an exquisite historic artifact from the past.

Vintage Beauties

Captain Biggles

Dirt to port, water to starboard? Then you’re headed south (in California, that is.)

That hard to reach place

FloaterWindow_and_Fun_FlightsYou know how there are times when you’ll do almost anything to scratch an itch? Yup, airplanes get them, too. That’s why we need mechanics.

Some history


In an earlier life, our “Olive” was one of seven Travel Air 4000 trainers for Oliver Parks’ Parks Airline.

Parks Air College Airlines (PACA) was awarded a contract airmail route, then swapped stock with Mid-Continent Airlines, which was later purchased by Ozark Air Lines, which later merged with TWA which eventually merged with American Airlines.

‘Great oaks from little acorns grow’ we guess, and we rather like the fact that Oliver’s plane has now morphed into our “Olive” at Fun Flights!

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