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Aviation history unfolds at Sacramento's air museum.

Among the airplane hangers and various military buildings on Mather Air Force Base near Sacramento is the eight-year-old Silver Wings Aviation Museum, filled with artifacts and displays that explain and interpret aviation history.

Start by looking overhead at 200 detailed solid wood models on loan from the Smithsonian. Carved by Sacramento area resident Roy Stone, the collection ranges from vintage biplanes and bombers to Boeing jumbo jets. Browse on your own or ask for a guided tour.

You can view one of 150 short films on aviation history, or sit in a mock-up World War II briefing room dated May 28, 1943, and imagine the mission commander discussing flight plans. You'll also see what Charles Lindbergh's Spirit of St. Louis instrument panel looked like, then compare it to a modern jet's.

Most displays have a military emphasis, but many realms are represented, including "Women in Aviation--The Pioneers," which briefly describes the accomplishments of such greats as Opal King, Pancho Barnes, and Amelia Earhart.

The free museum is open 10 to 4 weekdays, noon to 4 weekends. From U.S. 50 southeast of Sacramento, exit at Mather Air Force Base, go to the main gate, and ask for directions. For more information, call (916) 364-2177
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Title Annotation:Silver Wings Aviation Museum
Publication:Sunset
Date:Jul 1, 1985
Words:204
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