55,000 Thousand People!

Here we are with over 55,000 others at the International Pathfinder Camporee in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.  This is the main stage being assembled last week, in preparation for the evening meetings.  It was built with the top layer first, then raised up a bit, and another layer installed under the top layer, and so on for several layers.

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The theme is “Chosen” – saying we are chosen of God, and we need to choose to respond to Him as well.  Every evening there has been a play portraying a part of David’s life, how he was chosen of God, and times when he trusted God and times he failed to do so.  The production has been very well done, and the stage, scenery and effects are great.

We are fortunate to be staying in our “home on wheels” in an area of RV’s.  We have full hookups and are very comfortable.  The pictures below were taken from on our roof.  You’ll notice the “street” in front of us is pretty open and not busy.  Most other places in this huge area are packed with tents.  In these pictures it looks like RV’s go on forever – but that is only about 2 percent of the real estate here.  The tents literally go on for miles. We walked a big circle around maybe a quarter of the lot before everyone arrived and it was 3 miles.

When all these people arrived, they hit local stores, like Walmart, to get things they had forgotten or had decided not to take with them.  They also needed food to feed their groups. Here are pictures of empty shelves at the Walmart where fruits and vegetables should have been.  Camping supplies were also sold out.

 

 

 

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It is impossible to describe what over 55K people on one big field look like!  People as far as you can see!

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Over 100 countries are represented here, and they all are very proud of their flags!

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There have been hundreds of activities for the kids – I have no idea how they even decide what they would like to do!  We’ve spent a few hours just looking around at the tents full of educational opportunities, entertaining shows, delicious foods and lots more.  They have had hundreds of kids donate over 30,000 hours of community service in the Oshkosh area.  We’ve seen evidence of horseback riding, water skiing, and basketball competitions. The plethora of things to do would give you a headache!

 

EAA

Of course this is at the Experimental Aircraft Association grounds in Oshkosh… so one has to visit the amazing EAA museum.  We got far too little time there; I think we’ll come back next week when the crowds are a bit less!

The machine on the bottom right is a weight and balance calculator for old bombers.  It would let you calculate all the parameters before you actually loaded fuel and payload.

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A section is dedicated to the “Rutan Legacy”- Burt and Dick Rutan and their amazing unconventional aircraft.  Space Ship One in the foreground here was the first non-government manned spacecraft that was able to go to space and back, and again within 2 weeks.   Voyager was the first manned (and womaned) aircraft to fly around the world without refueling.  11 days in a cockpit far smaller than a regular twin bed.  Amazing!

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After spacecraft it only seems fitting to include a moon shot of my own- last night was a beautiful full moon.

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