Ride the Wind Day
Ride the Wind Day is August 23rd
National Ride the Wind Day is a day to celebrate Man’s ability to harness the wind for transportation, and also for pleasure. This fun holiday is observed annually on August 23rd to pay tribute to the anniversary of the first flight to ever win a coveted “Kremer Prize”.
The Kremer Prize Awards were established by Henry Kremer in 1959 to honor and inspire pioneers of human-powered flight. Mr. Kremer, in coordination with the Royal Aeronautical Society, established a series of flight speed and distance records that would be monumental to achieve in human-powered craft. Human-powered means aircraft that are powered only by man and the wind itself, no engines or other forms of power here.
The first to win a Kremer prize for distance was Dr. Paul MacCready with his aircraft “The Gossamer Condor 2” on August 23rd, 1977. This aircraft, pictured below, is a glider with an engine that is powered much like a bicycle.
The specifications for The Gossamer Condor 2’s historic, award-winning, flight were seemingly simple. The goal was to cruise in a figure-eight around 2 markers that were spaced a half mile apart, while keeping the craft at least 10 feet (3 meters) above the ground. A pilot by the name of Bryan Allen successfully flew the bicycle-like hang glider at a leisurely 11mph around the two markers creating a total flying distance of 2,172 meters. For those interested, there are still three Kremer Prizes that have not been awarded, all replete prize money to be given to any who are up to the challenge. More information about them can be found here.
It is unknown who created National Ride the Wind Day to commemorate this historic event, but we are glad that they did. Now we can all be inspired to get outside and enjoy those late summer breezes.
Interesting fun ways to celebrate Ride the Wind Day
Most people won’t think to construct or pilot an aircraft to break records or win prizes to celebrate this holiday. That’s OK, we probably wouldn’t either. There are plenty of other ways to celebrate National Ride the Wind Day that are sure to satisfy all you wind-lovers out there.
To celebrate Ride the Wind Day, all one really needs to do is to find some way to, well, ride the wind! Adventure seekers might go sailing or windsurfing, while others may want to hang glide, parasail, or even sky-dive. The more crafty enthusiasts out there can celebrate by constructing wind art pieces, wind chimes, or even by making paper airplanes. Children and adults the world over often celebrate by simply flying kites. The easiest thing to do may be to just go outside, have a nice picnic and appreciate the wind blowing through the leaves in the trees, or a breeze rustling your hair.
You can even use #RideTheWindDay to post on social media. Sticklers out there may say that all Ride the Wind Day activities should be human-powered, but there is really no wrong way to celebrate this day, so long as there is wind involved.
How Ride the Wind Day Unites People
There is no arguing that it has always been one of mankind’s greatest dreams to fly through the air. In modern times, with the prevalence and ease of flying for travel, this dream has become an every-day reality, but that doesn’t mean that it has lost its wonder! The human race is still thrilled with the prospect of flying, and we are still enamored with the beautiful sights the be seen from on high while riding a breeze. Airplanes and other craft have literally brought the world closer together, and letting the wind carry you over the land or piloting any kind of wind-device with friends will always bring people together. Ride the Wind Day is a day for all of us to appreciate the life-changing achievement of harnessing the wind’s power, and all of the thrills wind-powered activities can ignite. It is something that can truly unite people the world over.