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Rockets red glare high over Beeville Saturday
by Paul Gonzales
Aug 16, 2012 | 1570 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Paul Gonzales photo
Joe Vegh’s series of custom rockets may look heavy, but are actually made of light weight material and can usually be carried by one person. The largest one was unloaded by Vegh and his wife.
Paul Gonzales photo Joe Vegh’s series of custom rockets may look heavy, but are actually made of light weight material and can usually be carried by one person. The largest one was unloaded by Vegh and his wife.
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Paul Gonzales photo
Joe Vegh stands with his array of rockets out at the Beeville Municipal Airport this past Saturday. While the larger rocket wasn’t launched, Vegh’s currently working on getting certification to launch it in the near future.
Paul Gonzales photo Joe Vegh stands with his array of rockets out at the Beeville Municipal Airport this past Saturday. While the larger rocket wasn’t launched, Vegh’s currently working on getting certification to launch it in the near future.
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Paul Gonzales photo
A variety of smaller custom built rockets that were launched on Saturday. The one on the far right was inspired by the 1977 film “Star Wars”.
Paul Gonzales photo A variety of smaller custom built rockets that were launched on Saturday. The one on the far right was inspired by the 1977 film “Star Wars”.
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Beeville — William Yates, a South Texas Aerospace Club member, set up the first rocket launch and RC airplane show at the Beeville Municipal Airport last Saturday.

Car loads of rockets and trailers full of model planes rolled in to the airport that early Saturday morning to both watch and fly their rockets.

Yates said. “It’s fairly informal, and it’s just a bunch of guys having fun. Good, clean, safe fun.”

The crowd, from ages 3 to 68, amassed to watch the show with rocketeers from as far flung as Falfurrias, Corpus Christi, San Antonio and Austin attending the event.

This is the first time Beeville has ever hosted one of the monthly launches and fly-ins, and the city government was more than thrilled to be part of the event.

“They were very receptive, as a matter of fact,” Yates said.

“A lot of what we do basically is aeronautical engineering in the miniature. So, we have educational opportunities for youth, whether it be civil air patrol, ROTC, schools, kindergarten through grade 12 and college, and we have curriculum available as well.

“We’re very active with youth in the community.”

Young spectators were also allowed, under strict supervision, to launch one of the biggest rockets that day.

A total of 54 rockets were blasted into the air that day, as well as model aircraft which filled the skies, doing tricks and wowing the crowd with magnificent skill.

With the event’s success, a series of contests and shows are being currently worked out.

Yates said, “They were very receptive to getting special events and competition type events out here.

“Our parent organization, NAR (National Association of Rocketry), has competition events where we have people coming in from all over the United States to compete.

“One of the events that we’re going to be setting up ourselves is what’s called the Texas Vertical Mile.

“Basically, it’s a speed contest from the ground up to 5,280 feet up to see how fast you can go.

“It’s similarly set up like the Texas Mile that’s currently going on with the automobiles, except we do it with rockets.”

And, while the event went on without incident and the crowds hung around while the temperatures rose well into the 90s, no participants or spectators seemed to mind as they kept their eyes planted toward the skies.

For more information about joining STAC, you can visit www.stac.us or contact William Yates at (361) 571-1564.

Paul Gonzales is the entertainment writer at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 116, or at thescene@mySouTex.com.
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