Slemon Park Historical Aircraft Static Display
Restoration and Landscape Enhancement Project Phase - 1
Background and Project Overview
The Aviation Heritage Society of P.E.I. is currently engaged in the process of restoring three historical aircraft presently displayed at Slemon Park Aerospace Centre, formerly known as RCAF Station and Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Summerside. The aircraft display is represented by a CP-121/TRACKER anti-submarine and coastal patrol aircraft, a CP-107/ARGUS anti-submarine and maritime surveillance aircraft, and a CF-101/VOODOO supersonic air defence fighter. These aircraft served Canadian air elements over many years. The Argus and Tracker were both based at Summerside, while the Voodoo served at a sister base in Chatham NB. Over the years, these aircraft have fallen victim to the wear and tear of our environment and they require repairs and enhancement to adequately preserve the proud history of this former Air Force Base.
The Society has developed a multi-phased plan not only to restore the aircraft to their historical static condition, but to further enhance the area with a landscaped park and quality interpretive displays where visitors may leisurely inspect the aircraft as well as learn the history of the base and its people. A section of the brick walking path around the aircraft will have a special Walk of Honour where engraved Commemorative Stones will be placed along the borders of the pathway. Commemorative Stones may be obtained by families, relatives or friends to commemorate military and civilian personnel. The results of our endeavours will not only extend the life of an important part of our local aviation history but will enhance the entrance to an important emerging international Aerospace community that has become vital to our local economy.
Due to the level of funding received, the program was divided into two Phases. Phase 1 in 2010 included the restoration of all three aircraft and allow for preliminary work on the park infrastructure. Phase 2 in 2011 will see the completion of the park to include memorials and interpretive signage. The total project cost is approximately $500,000. We have received federal and provincial funding for Phase 1 but still need to raise funds for our contribution to the project.
As a Society, we are required to raise 10% of the required capital at the local level ($30,000 for Phase 1 this year). With donations from the City of Summerside and the Air Force Association of Canada #200 Summerside Wing and others, we were able to raise our first years' goal and we are actively canvassing for the funds required to complete Phase 2 in 2011.
To complete Phase 2 we are very much in need of additional support. We need to raise a minimum of 10% ($20,000) of the projected $200,000 cost to to continue receiving governmental support. Your Donations will provide the financial assistance to help us achieve our goal and they will be very much appreciated.
Project Long Term Viability
The park has been specifically designed to minimal maintenance landscape utilizing rock gardens, perennials and self-sustaining trees and shrubs. Slemon Park Corporation has graciously committed in the long-term maintenance and care taking of the park. The Aviation Heritage Society as mentioned above, have also included as a long-term fund-raiser the Walk of Honour which provides family, relatives and/or friends to obtain engraved stones for a donation of $100 to commemorate those who have served at the base. This program would also include summer students, Air Cadets, any past or present Canadian and Allied Airforce personnel, anyone with a close association to the base and to all who have served Canada in an area of conflict, i.e. WW1, WW2, Korea, UN Peacekeeping and Relief Missions, Afghanistan and future conflict operations.
Official Opening & Dedication Plans
As we expect Phase 2 to be complete in the summer of 2011, we have begun initial planning to hold Official Opening and Dedication Ceremonies on Friday 26 August in conjunction with the Atlantic Airshow to be held at Slemon Park on 27/28 Aug 2011. Further details will be provided in due course.
For more information about the Aviation Heritage Society (PEI) Inc. please go to www.aviationheritagepei.ca.Top of page