Naperville Sun - Frontier Kite Festival News

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Babbman
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Naperville Sun - Frontier Kite Festival News

Postby Babbman » Mon, Jun 04 2007, 05:13 AM

From the Naperville Sun

http://www.suburbanchicagonews.com/nape ... S1.article


High-flying fun in friendly skies
Kite enthusiasts flock to festival

June 4, 2007
By Lauren Sutherland Staff writer

Even the most whimsical child might have a hard time believing that one could find work as a professional kite flyer.

They rarely refer to themselves as professionals, but many of those who took to the fields and skies of Frontier Park during the Frontier Kite Fly Festival on Saturday and Sunday have elevated the simple leisure activity to new levels of artistry and sport, and are even compensated for flying their kites at exhibitions and competitions all over the world.

"It's a beautiful sport, beyond belief to watch," said avid kite flyer Udi Arieli, 55, of Park Ridge, motioning to a group of men choreographing an intricate, airborne ballet with their colorful quad-line stunt kites.

Families at the festival organized by the Naperville Park District watched kite experts from Chicago Kite, Sparling Kite Entertainment, Chromatic Kites, and the Illinois Kite Enthusiasts fly a variety of kite designs, and also were invited to bring their own kites to fly. Those who came to the park empty-handed could purchase kites from Chicago Kite, or assemble their own using a kit provided by the Park District.

The festival was a celebration of aerial exploits in general. For $5, children could enter the NASA fun area, sponsored by Saturn of Naperville. The fun area featured an inflatable rocket ship slide, a parachute simulator and a G-force apparatus, in addition to a rock-climbing wall and a penny arcade.

The kites and festival-goers alike danced to music provided by a disc jockey from 95.9 WERV The River on Saturday, and local band The Licks on Sunday afternoon.

This was the inaugural year of the Frontier Kite Fly Festival, although its coordinator, Park District Superintendent of Recreation Corrine Kroger, 24, hopes the tradition will take flight.

"Naperville has great parks and great people, and I look forward to doing it again next year," Kroger said.

Even sporadic bursts of rain and ominous storm clouds did not bar more than 1,000 people Saturday, and several hundred Sunday, from coming to the festival. Following a bout of rain on Sunday, the clouds were chased away by a flock of florescent stunt kites, a magenta salamander, and a 30-foot multi-colored prehistoric crab.

The most eye-catching kites of the event were manned by Alan Sparling, 49, a Naperville resident whose talents have taken him to exhibitions around the world.

On Saturday, Sparling unfurled a 90 ft. octopus more reminiscent of a sci-fi alien than a common kite. Recently he broke world kite flying records by managing 30 of the beasts simultaneously at a kite exhibition in France. In Thailand, he was invited to display his craft at a celebration of the King's 60th year on the thrown.

"The King couldn't even come, because by custom he can't be in the presence of anything taller than he is," Sparling recalled.

Most of the other kite flyers have not had adventures comparable to Sparling's, but many were just as passionate about a sport they claim is as meditative and relaxing as it is difficult.

"For me it's like throwing a fishing line off of a dock on your favorite lake," said IKE member Denny Simpson, 54, who came to Frontier Park from Bourbonnais. "Most days out of the week I have a very high stress job, and there are days I just walk out the back door of my office and start flying my kite. It's zen-like."

Arieli agreed.

"It is a sport like any other sport, and it's absolutely beautiful to see what these people can do," Arieli said. "It is good to have events like this that get people involved. "

Contact Lauren Sutherland at lsutherland@scn1.com or 630-416-5212.

Chris (aka Babbman)

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety...
Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759

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TheBigKiteGuy
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Re: Naperville Sun - Frontier Kite Festival News

Postby TheBigKiteGuy » Mon, Jun 04 2007, 07:29 AM

Babbman wrote:From the Naperville Sun

On Saturday, Sparling unfurled a 90 ft. octopus more reminiscent of a sci-fi alien than a common kite. Recently he broke world kite flying records by managing 30 of the beasts simultaneously at a kite exhibition in France.


It always amazes me how much things get twisted. 30 up from 19 and I did it by myself. :shock:
Alan Sparling

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Babbman
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Re: Naperville Sun - Frontier Kite Festival News

Postby Babbman » Mon, Jun 04 2007, 08:07 AM

I know what you mean Al...

A couple of years ago, we worked with the city to fix a problem with idiots who were using our street as a drag strip. We spent over a year trying to get one end of the street closed down to prevent people from using it as a through street... finally, there was a game of chicken on the road between 2 cars that had no business being on that road... they crashed and almost ran over one of my neighbors kids... they left the cars in the middle of the road and took off on foot...

At that point, the city decided to close one end of the road. Seemed to fix the problem immediately.

So I called the Beacon News and talked to the managing editor and told her what a wonderful story it would make... citizens work with the city government to fix a problem and the problem actually gets fixed. Child safety, a more quiet neighborhood, etc... all feel good stuff.... She did the interviews with me and and my neighbor and some others

When the article came out, it wasn't about working with the city government, it was about racism and how we were racists because we wanted the road closed off to keep the blacks out of our neighborhood from the apartment on the other side of the road... no mention of speeding (up to 100mph), crashes, child safety (lots of small kids on this street), the gun that someone dropped after an earlier crash and the 5 lbs of pot found in the car, the noise problem from ultra loud stereos, etc... it was all about us picking on them...

How accurate of them....


Chris (aka Babbman)



They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety...
Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759



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