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Last updated: June 17, 2004
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St. Francis Convent (6/13/2004)

Today's outreach went very well. How this event came to be was the idea of my Great Aunt who is a nun at the St. Francis Convent. The sisters were very excited, while looking forward to today's demonstration. The whole convent prayed for two weeks for nice weather and it worked, best day all week. It was a nice sunny day with a light breeze out of the Southwest. Just enough wind to keep the bugs away.

( I might have to keep this in mind for future MASA launches! <grin>)

After consulting with Ed Mills from the FAA, I did file a NOTAM for the launch even though I only launched small rockets. The convent's property is located only about one mile right off the end of the Little Falls airport's main runway. I also contacted the airport's manager who was very easy to work with. He informed me that a couple of years ago the local boy scouts launched their rockets right on the airport. I only saw about a half a dozen airplanes all day. We had more air traffic at the Bakken Museum.

Grand total I would have to estimate about 40 in attendance. Half were nuns and the other half were kids and their parents from the two local catholic schools. My grandparents also drove up from Waite Park to see. I owe my Mom a big thank you for tagging along to help with the gear and operate the launch controller, while I talked about the rockets.

Launch totals

1- MM " Bakken rocket"

1- A8-3 A streamer duration rocket

1- B6-2 Skywinder

5- B6-4's used in 2 Mach 12's, 1 stomp rocket, and a drag race with 2 Stars and Stripes

Not a single rocket landed in a tree despite the dozens of them in and around the launch area. Only the A streamer rocket suffered a separation. The demonstration lasted about an hour. I did bring along my larger rockets for "show and tell". The kids seemed to have a great time, with lots of questions afterwards.

Several of the sisters also told me that they enjoyed the show.

Afterward, my Great Aunt had cookies and several fruit juices available in the convent's dining hall. I missed most of the social due to loading the truck. I had fun, even though it was a so-so field in a non-ideal location.

 [Mike Erpelding]

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