A Week To Celebrate Aviation's Women

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Over the years, various events to recognize women's contributions to aviation have been held in March to coincide with Women's History Month, and this year, many events are scheduled for this week, in honor of International Women's Day on Thursday. A group based in Canada has organized Women of Aviation Week Worldwide to encourage pilots to introduce women to aviation. This Saturday, pilots can participate by taking a woman or girl for her first flight, or by taking part in an airport open house or fly-in event. In Europe on Saturday, volunteer pilots will fly across the English Channel to celebrate the centennial of the first crossing by a female pilot, Harriet Quimby, in 1912. Many more events are planned around the world and throughout the month.

One of the main fly-in events is scheduled for the Frederick, Md., airport, this Saturday. Last year, Frederick set the record for giving the most intro flights to women and girls. The free flights are already booked (though there is a waiting list), but there are plenty of events on the field for everyone, including tours of the tower, flight simulators, and lots of booths, speakers, and food. About 100 airports around the world will be hosting flights on Saturday. Many aviation museums also are hosting special exhibits. The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum will host a "Women in Aviation and Space" family day on March 24 at the Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va., and on March 28, curator Valerie Neal will give a talk about female space shuttle commanders. In New York, the 99s are hosting a tribute to aviation's legendary women at the Cradle of Aviation Museum on Long Island this Sunday.

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