Drawn to Central Florida: SUN ‘n FUN

By: Jessica Roberts

The second stop on our Drawn to Central Florida tour, as described by the artist, Josh “Bump” Galletta.

Most everyone knows when the annual SUN ‘n FUN International Fly-In & Expo is in town. Not only can brief flashes of overhead airshows be seen from parts of Lakeland (including my yard), the event is huge!

SUN 'n FUN International Fly-In & Expo

We enjoyed ourselves so much, we ended up staying two hours longer than we planned.

— Bump Galletta

This was my family’s first year visiting the actual SUN ‘n FUN grounds – I always thought I was seeing most of what the event had to offer when jets would fly overhead at home, but boy was I wrong! There is so much more to the event.

Poster Image for Drawn to Central Florida SUN 'n FUN International Fly In & Expo

My kids got to explore the inside of planes, we talked to
mechanics and pilots, saw amazing airshows and planes so big they could hold eight Humvees! Everyone
was really friendly and the weather was perfect (of course).

I have to admit, Warbird Country, an area dedicated to
vintage aircraft, was one of my favorite places to visit. Not everyone knows
this about me, but I went through a WWII history buff phase. I loved learning
more about the 30s and 40s and creating art in the style of that era. We actually
have quite a few pieces of art hanging in our home that resemble some of the
vintage pinup art seen on those massive warbirds. My wife and I were like kids
in a candy store taking selfies with our favorite planes.

The highlight of the day happened as we were leaving the grounds…
While we were pushing our son’s stroller on our way to the car, we caught him in
“pilot mode,” pretending like he was flying his own plane. It was cute and I couldn’t help but think, “I may have a ‘Maverick’ on my hands,” haha! And to think, his love for aviation may be something that started right here at the SUN ‘n FUN International Fly-In & Expo in Lakeland, Florida.

About SUN ‘n FUN International Fly-In & Expo

SUN ‘n FUN International Fly-In & Expo is the second largest fly-in in the United States. It attracts pilots and aviation enthusiasts from around the world, turning Lakeland Linder Regional Airport into the busiest airport in North America for one week. An average of 200,000 visitors from across the United States and more than 80 countries around the globe attend the event. It’s the perfect experience for those looking for an aviation adventure in Central Florida.

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