With more than 23 years of experience flying at air shows across the world, Dan Buchanan astonishes and inspires crowds each year with his unique gliding act, despite his handicap that prevents him from walking. Flying an unpowered hang glider, Buchanan’s performance is packed with comedy and excitement. In a high-speed police chase, Buchanan performs several aerial water-ski turns in the sky and makes a graceful descent filled with smoke, streamers, brilliant flashes and custom special effects. Just as Buchanan is about to get “caught” by the police, his trusty friend, OTTO the Helicopter, saves the day by delivering Buchanan his wheelchair from the sky. Buchanan has been the recipient of three prestigious air show awards including: The Art Scholl Award for Showmanship, The Bill Barber Award for Showmanship and the ICAS Special Achievement Award.
When OTTO the Helicopter isn’t helping Dan Buchanan escape from authorities, he stays busy entertaining crowds with his choreographed performance set to lively music. Appealing especially to kids, OTTO’s performance consists of him blowing bubbles, playing with a yo-yo, racing around barrels and picking them up and shooting smoke in all directions. OTTO is a Hughes TH-55 helicopter. His vibrant paint scheme, including a smiling face on the front of the helicopter, has been a family favorite at air shows around the country.
Kent Pietsch, sponsored by Jelly Belly® will bring his aerobatic comedy act to North Georgia’s skies in his bright yellow, jelly bean-decorated 1942 Interstate Cadet aircraft. Pietsch performs extreme maneuvers during his performance such as a dead stick, or total power off, routine from an altitude of 6,000 feet. During the performance, the aircraft’s aileron will fall off during mid-air, and Pietsch will land the aircraft on top of his RV. Pietsch began his flying career at a young age and at 16 years old, took his first solo flight. Following in his father’s footsteps, Pietsch began flying commercial charters for his father’s company Pietsch Aircraft in Minot, North Dakota in 1974. Soon after, he restored his Interstate Cadet and began flying air shows with his father and brother Gary.
“Not only do we have two major jet teams, but we also have a great lineup of civilian performers too!” said Rob Skelton, Air Show Director. “There’s no doubt these performers have talent, and I know that the kids will especially love Dan Buchanan, OTTO the Helicopter and Kent Pietsch’s performances. The weekend will be packed full of family fun.”
In addition to Dan Buchanan, OTTO the Helicopter and Kent Pietsch’s performances, Wings Over North Georgia will be headlined by the Canadian Forces Snowbirds and Black Diamond Jet Team. Several other civilian aerobatic performers and military aircraft will appear and perform at the fall air show. A full lineup is expected to be announced within the next month.
Advance purchase tickets are now on sale at www.WingsOverNorthGeorgia.com along with a current list of growing performers and attractions. The show can also be found on Facebook. High resolution photos and b-roll of Dan Buchanan, OTTO the Helicopter and Kent Pietsch are available upon request from Herb Gillen Agency.
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