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Strays: Powder Puff Derby
August 1976 QST Article

August 1976 QST

August 1976 QST  Cover - RF CafeTable of Contents

Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics. See articles from QST, published December 1915 - present (visit ARRL for info). All copyrights hereby acknowledged.

Powder Puff Derby Peanuts July 6, 1975 - RF CafePrior to seeing this new tidbit in a 1976 issue of QST magazine, I had no idea that the wife of Peanuts comic strip creator Charles Schulz was an airplane pilot - and that is with having been a huge Peanuts fan for decades. Other than one of Snoopy's alter egos being that of a World War I flying ace, there is no other theme of airplanes in the strip, although according to this article, there was a 1975 Sunday comic strip with Peppermint Patty and Marcie flying atop Snoopy's doghouse, from California to Michigan. The Straits Area Radio Club (W8GQN) provided communications for the Powder Puff Derby, aka the Women's Air Derby, race in which Mrs. Jean Clyde Schulz took part in 1970, 1971, and 1975. It was a very long course - more than 2,000 miles as the crow flies, spanning from Riverside, California, to Boyne Falls, Michigan. She didn't win, unfortunately.

Strays: Powder Puff Derby

Powder Puff Derby, August 1976 QST - RF Cafe

Shown kneeling in front of their rig at the Boyne Falls airport are: A guest, W8RPN, WB80TO and W8A YZ. Standing are: W8BTN, W8HKL, W3GTC (national chairman, Powder Puff Derby Communications Group), and Robert McKown, club secretary. Other operators included WA4JLE/8, W8BTX, W80AF, W8IAR, K8AEA, WB8HSLand WB8REH.

The W8GQN Straits Area Radio Club provided communications for the recent annual Powder Puff Derby, a four-day race of female fliers. Club members manned a van set up at the terminus of the race, the Boyne Falls, Michigan, airport, that kept the principals in touch with intervening check points between the starting point, Riverside, California, and Boyne Falls. On a Sunrise-to-sunset duty schedule divided into three shifts, oper-ators worked in pairs, using 20, 40 and 80 meters. The traffic count totaled 708. Since one of the feminine fliers was Mrs. Charles Schulz, wife of the Peanuts cartoonist, the Derby attracted national attention in a unique way. Adding to the fun were a stuffed Snoopy and his little bird pal, Woodstock, who flew in one plane, while the pilot of another dressed as the Red Baron.



Posted July 22, 2020

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RF Cafe began life in 1996 as "RF Tools" in an AOL screen name web space totaling 2 MB. Its primary purpose was to provide me with ready access to commonly needed formulas and reference material while performing my work as an RF system and circuit design engineer. The World Wide Web (Internet) was largely an unknown entity at the time and bandwidth was a scarce commodity. Dial-up modems blazed along at 14.4 kbps while tying up your telephone line, and a nice lady's voice announced "You've Got Mail" when a new message arrived...

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