Miss Edna, Flat Stanley and I headed for McMinnville because I figured that the little guy would love visiting the airplanes and helicopters. I know I've been wanting to see that huge wooden airplane, the Spruce Goose, the one that Howard Hughes designed and had built. McMinnville is only an hour from Portland by Buick.
Flat Stanley had heard Miss Edna and me talking about the Dairy Queen in Newberg where we've enjoyed a milkshake or two. As we neared it he asked, "Could we stop for an ice cream cone, please?" I like a young man with good manners! All he wanted was that ice cream cone--it's big enough to satisfy a crowd of people! Mama and I got the four chicken stips meal to share.
"Look! Look!" Flat Stanley hollered, excited at what he could see from the highway as we approached the turn off for the the museum. Colorful hot air balloons! As we got closer, I realized they were teathered and that a small crowd had gathered no doubt waiting for their turn in the basket.
We were thrilled to see this kind of aircraft, so to speak, which made us even more excited about touring the museum. Unfortunately, the museum was closed for a private party, preventing our entering it. We did have fun outside, though.
First we spent a moment of silence at this memorial, right out front of the museum. I was happy that Flat Stanley wanted his photo beside it so that everyone could read what it says.
Flat Stanley decided this was close enough to get to the camo-jet on display outside the museum building that houses the Spruce Goose.
On the opposite side of the entrance to the museum, Flat Stanley poses in front of a plane that sports a pin-up girl on its nose. When we visited the museum's Web site later on, we found out that soldiers sometimes called planes like this one Gooney Birds or Goonies. "That's funny!" Flat Stanley said. I asked him if he'd seen that movie "Goonies," and he told me that he liked it a lot. (Maybe we'll get to go over to the Cannon Beach so we can show him that great big rock that's in the movie. Folks affectionately call it the Gooney Rock; it's official name is Haystack Rock. We'll see how it goes with time and the weather--sometimes the roads can be bad between here and the coast in the winter. The possibility of a visit is a secret, so don't tell the little guy if you see him, OK?)
We found this sign in the ground beside plane.
Out in front on the plane, there's a small sitting area with this sign in it. Flat Stanley wondered about having the benches and the picnic table there in the little garden. I explained that many of the visitors to the museum would be veterans of different wars, some of them getting on up their in years. Those folks would appreciate having a bench to sit on while thinking back to their days in uniform. "I bet families with kids would like that picnic table," he told me, "because they could sit down and eat something before they go inside the museum." He's a smart kid, isn't he?
Around to the side of the parking lot between this building and a new one being built, there's a fenced area. Flat Stanley decided to stay in the car to take a look at this Navy helicopter. Miss Edna made sure he didn't fall out onto the pavement.
At the back of the main museum building, Flat Stanley spied this plane. We didn't know what it was, but he wanted his photo beside it anyway.
Then we walked to the front of the plane for a photo and found out that the plane is a MIG. Can you see it in the orange circle? "I like the paint on this plane," Flat Stanley said. "I bet it's blue on the bottom and camo of the top to make it hard to see from anywhere at all. What do you think?" he asked me. I had to agree with him. "I'm proud of you for noticing that," I told him as we drove away from the museum. "We'll come back for another visit soon," I promised.
You can see that Oct. 28 visit at Portland (OR) Daily Photo. You won't want to miss it because the little guy had a blast--got to meet some "movie star" types even!