Have a blast(-off) this weekend near Argonia


By Travis Mounts

The 26th annual Airfest will be held Friday through Monday at the appropriately-named rocket pasture, just a few miles outside of Argonia.
The annual event is hosted by KLOUDBusters, which was formed in 1990.
Held every Labor Day weekend, Airfest is billed as the Midwest’s premiere regional launch. It draws rocketeers from across the country. The Federal Aviation Administration grants a special waiver to allow for super-high launches up to 50,000 feet. Normal cruising altitude for jet airliners is usually around 35,000 feet.
Spectators need to know that launch times are approximate, and can be impacted by field and weather conditions. Organizers advise arriving early. Especially on Saturday and Sunday, plan to arrive by 10 or 11 am.; launches generally wrap up by about 4 p.m. Monday’s launches are likely to wrap up earlier.
The rocket pasture is located just east of the corner of 80th Avenue South and Eden Road. From Argonia, go straight south on Argonia Road to 80th Avenue South. From the Wichita area, take K-42 Highway to Viola, then follow K-49 south. Keep to the K-44 junction before Caldwell, and head west on K-44 to Eden Road.
While masks are not required in Sumner County, they are encouraged when interacting with others or you should maintain social distance of at least six feet.
For more information, visit the website at www.kloudbusters.org and click on the “Airfest” link.