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Kites

KiteLife Website
Member of the American Kitefliers Association,
Pilot # 131387.
Member since June, 2015.






What's In The Kite Bag    Kite Festival Pictures
Kite Links    Kite Videos    Kite Gallery
Article, "Beneath His Wings"
Article, "World Renowned Kite Artist"
Article, "To Fly A Kite"

Robert Hilliard's Youtube Channel

Kites...
They've been around for thousands of years.

I've always had a fascination with kites of all kinds. When I was a child, I made my own diamond kites with sticks of wood, string and newspaper. I would notch the ends of the sticks and run string around the kite, then cut a piece of newspaper to fit and glue the ends. For a tail, I would take several old rags and tie them together. My string was rolled up on a short piece of a tree limb.

Kite Videos and Pictures


Utilizing my GoPro on some of my sport kites at the Trinity Wind Festival, Dallas, Texas, October 29, 2016

My Skyburner Nik Nak on the beaches of Opfel Park, Galveston, Texas, Texas. October, 2016

A TOTL North Shore Radical that I used to own on the beaches of Quintana, Texas. October, 2016

Flying my Skyburner NikNak. I love the feel of this kite. Tracks very well. June, 2014

My kite video entitled Higher Flying where I utilized a friends drone for many of the shots. November, 2014


On the beach at Surfside Beach, Texas.
 
Getting sport kites ready to fly.



Putting together the Nik Nak at Opfel Park in Galveston, Texas.
 
Time for a Corona to get its lime.



What's In My Kite Bag?

My journey with sport kites began in March of 2014. That's when I bought my first sport kite, a Prism Quantum. And for some reason, I haven't looked back.

Pictured below are the sport kites that I currently have in my kite bag. It's by no means complete, but it represents a number of different types of sport kites for various winds and types of flying.




Lam Hoac Skymaster UL (White)

Lam Hoac has established himself as one of the top kite builders in the country, further compounded with his recognition as the 2003 AKA Grand Champion in Dayton Ohio using this newly designed kite, the Skymaster. Also marking the first time a sport kite ever acheived such an award in comprehensive grand national competition. The Skymaster is clearly built with durability in mind, and everything is streamlined to avoid line snags during trick combinations and ground recovery.
  Skymaster Specifications:
• Status - Out of Production
• Skill Level - Intermediate to Expert
• Sail - Icarex
• Frame - Sky Shark 3PT
• Wing Span - 90"
• Advertised Wind Range - 5 to 25 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 8 to 20 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 12 mph
• Designed and Hand Built by Lam Hoac, Canada, 2005

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Premier Widow NG (Red & Black)

The design is based on the Skyburner Widow Maker, the Widow NG utilizes the same shape and overall design to achieve one of the best all-around kites. Considered to be one of Jon Trennephol's finest achievements in sport kite design, Premier worked closely with Jon and Sky Burner Kites to create an updated version of this high performance flying machine. The Widow NG excels in all slack-line maneuvers and high tech tricks yet tracks like a dream.
  Widow NG Specifications:
• Status - In Production, but not in Red, Black and White
• Skill Level - Intermediate to Expert
• Sail - Ripstop Polyester
• Frame - Skyshark P Series Carbon Fiber
• Wing Span - 96"
• Weight - 11 ounces
• Bridle - 3 Point Adjustable
• Advertised Wind Range - 5 to 15 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 6 to 15 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 10 mph
• Made in China
• Designed by Premier/John Trennepohl

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Prism Hypnotist (Fire)

A high performance wing shape with a durable frame, the Hypnotist combines the best of both for learning new tricks and everyday fun. Prism combined the wing geometry of the competition-level Quantum Pro with the bulletproof frame design of the Quantum to create a performance hybrid with the balance of a competition kite but the durability to handle all the abuse you can dish out. The impressive 8-foot wingspan makes it precise and very forgiving.
  Hypnotist Specifications:
• Status - In Production
• Skill Level - Intermediate to Expert
• Sail - Ripstop Nylon, Mylar Laminate
• Frame - Pultruded Carbon, Wrapped Carbon
• Wing Span - 94"
• Weight - 14 ounces
• Advertised Wind Range - 4 to 25 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 10 to 20 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 15 mph
• Made in China by Prism Kites

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Sky Delight Kestrel

When I first started flying in 2014, I quickly decided I wanted a vintage kite to fly ballet with. After watching Ray Bethell fly three of these at one time, I decided I could certainly fly one. This kite is dated 1/25/2000 and signed by Joel Scholz. When I need a higher wind to fly, this one fits the bill and does it with absolute precision! It is a crowd pleaser.
 

Kestrel Specifications:
• Status - Out of Production
• Skill Level - Intermediate to Expert
• Sail - .75 ounce Ripstop Nylon
• Frame - 2400 Graphite or P2 SkyShark
• Wing Span - 90"
• Weight - 11.6 ounces
• Advertised Wind Range - 2 to 25 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 10 to 25 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 15 mph
• Made in the USA by Joel Scholz and Sky Delight Kites

Hilliard Kite Gallery
Ray Bethell's Review on the Kestrel
KiteLines, Summer 1994, Article on Kestrel




Pizazz 325 Custom (Standard Vented)

This kite was made by Dick Barnes of Pizazz Kite Works for Ray Bethell in 2002. It is the standard, vented model. Ray flew it for a short time then gave it back to Dick Barnes. In 2005, the kite was entered in a raffle at the Whidbey Island Kite Festival in Washington State. Jim Fielder won the kite and not long after sold the kite to Charles (Stoney) Stonestreet. Dick Barnes signed this kite in 2002 and Ray Bethell signed it in Long Beach, CA. in 2005. I purchased this historic kite from Stoney's Kite Collection in May, 2017.
 

Pizazz Specifications:
• Status - Out of Production
• Skill Level - Intermediate to Expert
• Sail - Chikara Nylon
• Frame - SkyShark
• Wing Span - 98"
• Weight - 8.5 ounces
• Advertised Wind Range - 2 to 22 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 10 to 25 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 15 mph
• Made in the USA by Dick Barnes, Pizazz

Hilliard Kite Gallery




Magnum Opus

"This kite is big, fast, silent and does great snap turns. Great stability during slides and groundwork is great. Excellent Precision. The workmanship is pretty good, and seems very solid. Takes time to put together, with all the 8 battens, 2 camber inducers and 2 standoffs. This is considered one of my best kite investments."
- Paul Kalowski, 1992
  Magnum Opus Specifications:
• Status - Out Of Production
• Skill Level - Intermediate to Expert
• Sail - Icarex
• Frame - Linear Carbon
• Wing Span - 120"
• Advertised Wind Range - 8 to 20 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 8 to 15 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 12 mph
• Made in the early 1990's in the USA
• Made by Chicago Fire Kite Company

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Silver Fox 2.5 STD (Purple)

The Silver Fox series of professional sport kites features the Turbo Beads System bridle (TBS). This unique bridle bead system lets you easily change your kites bridle settings to either a 3 point or turbo bridle setup. Use 3 point mode for more Precision Flying, team, or low wind flying. Switch to Turbo Mode for Trick Flying and individual or high wind flying. You can easily and quickly change your bridle on your kite by simply attaching the bridle connection points to the same color marked beads already on the kite.
  Silver Fox 2.5 (12502) Specifications:
• Status - Out of Production
• Skill Level - Intermediate
• Sail - PC31 Ventex polyester
• Frame - T18
• Wing Span - 98"
• Weight - 12.6 ounces
• Advertised Wind Range - 5 to 20 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 8 to 20 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 12 mph
• Made in the USA by Flying Wings Kites
• Silver Fox 2.5 designed by Lam Hoac

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Prism Quantum (Radian Special Edition)

Prism created this kite to celebrate their 25th anniversary. It features an undeniably 90's color scheme, which is a nod to the Radian, the very first kite crafted in the Seattle workshop in 1992. Historically, the Quantum is a rather heavy kite and needs a lot of wind to fly. This kite is no different, however it tracks very well and is very responsive.
  Quantum Specifications:
• Status - Only 200 made for Prism 25th Anniversary
• Skill Level - Beginner to Intermediate
• Sail - Ripstop Nylon Mylar
• Frame - Pultruded Carbon
• Wing Span - 84"
• Weight - 14.3 ounces
• Advertised Wind Range - 3 to 25 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 10 to 20 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 15 mph
• Made in the USA by Prism Kites

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Skyburner Nik Nak (Blue & Plum)

The Nik Nak is destined to be a classic performer. This kite is my go-to kite when winds are low and I want to have some fun flying. Tracks absolute and is very responsive. Sail sewn by Heads Up Kites, Mike Dennis and the late Pam Kirk. The Nik Nak was being made by Skyburner but is currently out of production. This is the lightest kite that I own weighing at 4.4 ounces! And it is tough. It has taken a lot of abuse.
  Skyburner Nik Nak Specifications:
• Status - Out of Production
• Skill Level - Intermediate to Expert
• Sail - Polycarbonate
• Frame - 1570 Pultruded
• Wing Span - 78"
• Weight - 4.4 ounces
• Bridle - Spectra 3 point
• Advertised Wind Range - 0 to 10 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 6 to 15 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 10 mph
• Made in the USA by Sky Burner/John Trennepohl

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Premier Addiction (Smoke)

This kite is addicting to fly; try it once and you can't put it down. Designed by the team of Jon Trennepohl and Wayne Brunjes, the Addiction is durable enough for the beginner/novice flyer and performs for the master flyer as well. Updated recently by Jon Trennepohl, the Addiction features an advanced bridle with easy adjustable jam knots and an improved outhaul/main configuration.
  Addiction Specifications:
• Status - In Production, but not in Smoke color
• Condition - Excellent
• Skill Level - Beginner to Intermediate
• Sail - Ripstop Nylon
• Frame - Carbon Fiber
• Wing Span - 72"
• Weight - 6.4 ounces
• Advertised Wind Range - 4 to 20 mph
• Wind Range Experience - 7 to 15 mph
• Optimum Wind Experience - 10 mph
• Made in China
• Designed by Premier/John Trennepohl

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Prism Nexus (Yellow)



Prism Nexus (Blue)

Big enough for real-kite performance, but small enough to pack in a suitcase, the Nexus is a sleeper of a kite that performs very well. It's simple, rugged and affordable. It tracks very well since its smaller in size and is a bit faster. I keep two Nexus' for flying 2 at a time.
  Nexus Specifications:
• Status - In Production
• Skill Level - Beginner to Intermediate
• Sail - Ripstop Nylon, Mylar Laminate
• Frame - Pultruded Carbon, Fiberglass
• Wing Span - 60"
• Weight - 9 ounces
• Advertised Wind Range - 4 to 22 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 5 to 20 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 10 mph
• Made in China by Prism Kites

Hilliard Kite Gallery


Sport Kites for the Family



ITW Kymera (Red)

The Kymera pushes the ultimate in design with its unique sail shape and flying characteristics. The sail panels are specifically cut to give the kite a broader shape and huge wind response. Once the kite sail is loaded the, Kymera gives the pilot a solid and firm feel on the lines. This feel allows the pilot to know exactly what the kite is doing during flight, making tricks easy to execute because you will know the exact timing needed to execute. Not only does the Barresi Kymera trick exceptionally well, it tracks like it is on rails, making precision maneuvers and cracking snap turns precise and deliberate.
  Kymera Specifications:
• Status - In Production
• Skill Level - Beginner to Expert
• Sail - Icarex Ripstop Polyester
• Frame - Skyshark Carbon Fiber
• Wing Span - 86"
• Weight - 11.1 ounces
• Advertised Wind Range - 4 to 18 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 7 to 15 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 10 mph
• Made in the USA by John Barresi, Into the Wind

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Yin Yang
(Red/Black/White)

This radically different kite can take you from your first flight to advanced tricks. Wolfgang Seibert's Yin Yang is ultra-precise at everything it does. A great confidence-builder, it just gets better as you improve your skills.
  Yin Yang Specifications:
• Status - In Production
• Skill Level - Intermediate
• Sail - Ripstop Nylon
• Frame - Graphite
• Wing Span - 78"
• Weight - 7.9 ounces
• Advertised Wind Range - 3 to 30 mph
• Robert's Wind Range - 8 to 15 mph
• Robert's Optimum Wind Experience - 12 mph
• Designed and made by Wolfgang Seibert

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Skydog Kites Black Dog UL

The Black Dog flew so well during it's extensive testing in lighter winds that Skydog had to make a sample using .5oz polyester sail material with a much lighter carbon frame, and it worked! Now fliers have a sport kite that is capable of today's most advanced tricks but designed specifically for lighter wind use. The Black Dog UL allows the pilot to fly the way they want to in lower wind conditions with ease and grace! The Black Dog UL includes all of the features found on sport kites designed for advanced flying.
  Black Dog UL Specifications:
• Status - In Production
• Condition - Excellent
• Skill Level - Intermediate to Expert
• Sail - Ripstop Nylon
• Frame - 4mm & 5mm Carbon Fiber
• Wing Span - 77"
• Tail weight system included
• Advertised Wind Range - 2 to 10 mph
• Wind Range Experience - 7 to 15 mph
• Optimum Wind Experience - 12 mph
• Made in the USA by Skydog Kites

Hilliard Kite Gallery



Premier Bullseye Stingray

There's hardly any information about this kite that's available. I purchased this off of Ebay and primarily use it for training beginners such as children and grandchildren. It's out of production but it flies in low winds and tracks very well. And, it takes all kinds of abuse.
  Stingray Specifications:
• Status - Out of Production
• Condition - Very Good
• Skill Level - Beginner to Intermediate
• Sail - Ripstop Nylon
• 5 to 10 mph
• Optimum Wind Experience - 8 mph
• Product #P-66445

Hilliard Kite Gallery


Single Line Kites



Legs Kite by Martin Lester

  Specifications:
The original flying Legs and still a best seller, they jog their way through the sky.

3D wind inflated kites without frame – no assembly. All these kites are true kites – they fly by themselves and do not need a pilot or lifter kite to keep them in the air.

Standard:
• Size: 0.80m x 2.40m.
• WR: force 3 – 5
• Status - In Production
• Condition - Good




Kensei Hata Kite

  Specifications:
Inspired by the Nagasaki Hata, this fighter has a moderate speed that makes it very easy to master. Add the 12-ft. nylon tail and it converts to the world's best flying diamond kite. In winds from light to gale force (4 to 40 mph) it's a foolproof flier. Made in the USA of ripstop nylon on wood & fiberglass spars. 27" across. 0.8-oz. 29" case.



My Joel Scholz Kestrel, flying with one 50' tail and two 25' tails.



Flying the Kestrel is a dream come true for me. I love the old school sport kites from the 1980's, 90's and early 2000's.


Kite Festival Pictures/Kite Links/Kite Videos/Kite Articles

Below are some kite festival links and pictures that we've attended as well as numerous kite-related links I have found to be helpful.

On this page are some articles I have written concerning some great kite makers and flyers that have made an impression on the kite flying industry.

Also there are various videos including a video illustrating the multi-kite flying talent of Ray Bethell. Ray's an award-winning multi-kite champion. His video "Romancing The Wind" inspired me to start flying sport kites.



Kite Trips, Festivals and Pictures

Kite Event Calendar - American Kite Fliers Association Calendar

2016

10th Annual Sertoma Kite Festival - Waco, Texas - May 7, 2016
Gulf Coast Trip - Surfside Beach/Quintana/Galveston - October 12-16, 2016
Trinity Wind Festival - Dallas, Texas - October 29, 2016

2015

Note: Many Kite Festivals for Spring and Fall, 2015 were not attended due to cancellations or postponements.
Flight of the Monarch Festival - Grand Prairie, Texas - September 19, 2015

2014

Arlington Kite Festival - Arlington, Texas - April 5, 2014
Edmond Kite Festival - Edmond, Oklahoma - June 28, 2014
Bonham Kite Festival - Bonham, Texas - July 12, 2014
Plano Balloon Festival - Plano, Texas - September 20, 2014
Flight of the Monarch Festival - Grand Prairie, Texas - September 27, 2014



Kathy and I at the 10th Annual Sertoma Kite Festival in Waco, Texas - May 7, 2016.
 
Getting ready to fly my Kestrel with tails for the first time.



All good things must come to an end. Disconnecting lines for pack up.
 
Kathy got to fly her Martin Lester Baseball Legs kite.



Other Kite Videos

This is the video that got me into flying stunt kites. Excellent video entitled, "Romancing The Wind" by Ray Bethell. Ray flies three Kestrel sport kites at one time.

Ray Bethell's kite dance video in Vancouver, BC. This time the kite ballet to the music of Debussy. Video shot and edited by Robert Holbrook.

TKO Kite Team performing at the Plano, Texas Balloon Festival on September 20, 2014.

Good video of the legendary Top Of The Line Kite Team in 1990 from San Diego, CA.




Beneath His Wings

by Robert E. Hilliard
June 16, 2016


In the late 1970’s, a man from Vancouver, British Columbia traveled to Hawaii on vacation. While there, he noticed a group of people flying kites on the beach.

While he had always thought that flying kites was for sissy’s, he became interested in the fact that they were flying kites with 2 lines instead of one. It peaked his interest and when he returned to Vancouver, he tried his hand at flying a sport kite.

Little did the kiting world know that from these humble beginnings a man would develop and hone his kite piloting skills to become a 3 time American Kite Association champion but most of all, he would become a man of deep passion for the sport that desperately loves kiting and his fellow man.

It took Ray Bethell a number of years to learn how to fly. He started by flying one sport kite, then he tried flying two which he became successful at in a short period of time. He achieved this by flying one sport kite from his hand and the other from his hip. Living in Vancouver, Ray would develop his piloting skills at Vanier Park located next to the downtown area. Every day, the Chinook winds would make their way into Vancouver from the Strait of Georgia affording Ray the clean winds he needed to hone and perfect his craft. It would take him hours and hours of grueling practice, days of successes and failures.

By 1980, Ray was flying in team competitions on the West coast of Canada and America. It was during this time that Ray decided to try flying three sport kites simultaneously. Within a matter of a few short years, Ray had developed his unique style flying a sport kite from each hand and one from the hip.

Once the word got out that there was a pilot able to fly three sport kites simultaneously, Ray was asked to compete at kite competitions in the Freestyle and Ballet categories. His popularity grew with each competition. Soon he attracted the attention of kite manufacturers and event organizers from all over the world.

Successes like these don’t come easy. It takes a lot of hard work to perfect a style that Ray was becoming known for. But for Ray, this was more than just flying kites at a kite competition. Ray brings with him the human element. He loves to fly and he has developed the passion it takes to give back to his audience. Ray is one of the very few kite pilots that make you feel he is performing just for you. As a spectator, one can see the passion that Ray exudes in his performance and Ray doesn’t want anyone to walk away without falling in love with kite flying and the joy it can bring.

The flying records and awards have mounted up. In 1991, he flew 2 kites, one from each hand. 1992, 3 kites, one from each hand and one from the hip. In 1993, he flew three kites simultaneously for 8 hours and 42 minutes. 1994, Ray flew three kites for a record breaking 12 hours and 12 minutes. In the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, Ray flew a number of stacked kites, the highest totaling 39! While accomplishing all this, Ray’s considers his greatest asset to be the kiting fans and friends he has developed along the way. For Ray, this is not about popularity and ego… it’s about people and the joy of kiting. He calls this, “Good Stuff” and he’s been featured in numerous videos talking about not just his flying skills, but about his passion for life and his interest in the success of his fellow man.

Age has slowed Ray down a little bit, but it hasn’t stopped him. He is the picture of health although he can’t attend every event he would like to. When Ray is not attending a kite competition, you can find him flying in his beloved Vanier Park. In October of 2006, A park bench was installed in Vanier Park in Ray’s honor. He considers it to be the most outstanding gesture of love a man could have. Next time you’re in Vancouver, take a stroll through Vanier Park and sit on the bench dedicated to Ray. On some days, you can even watch Ray perform his multiple kite flying technique. Ray would want that for you. In Ray’s mind, the wind will forever be beneath his wings. He beckons you to join him.




Picture from page 6 of the Sky Delight Kites catalog from year 2000.




Additional articles written by Robert Hilliard





World Renowned Kite Artist

by Robert E. Hilliard
August 17, 2015


If you asked Joel Keith Scholz if he truly felt he was a world renowned kite artist, his humbleness would probably urge him to answer in the negative. But deep, down inside there’s an artistic creativeness and drive that keeps reminding him of his kite designing accomplishments. And those accomplishments are very hard to ignore.

Scholz made his first kite at age 9 however, it was somewhere between being a graphic artist-cartographer, laboratory technician, x-ray technologist and art teacher that his kite designing talent really took off. And that newly-found career began in 1986 and lasted some 15 glorious years.

During that time, Joel racked up numerous awards and accolades. He quickly became world renowned for producing the most innovative and finest quality kites. Joel was described in American Kite Magazine as “One of America’s best kite designers”. In Kitelines Magazine he was hailed as being “On the forefront of the next generation of kite makers”. His kites set world records and ultimately found themselves hanging in museums throughout the world.

Sky Delight Kites - Year 2000 Catalog

Not bad for a man that learned how to design kites from spending years on a sailboat in central Texas. With the love and support of Bonnie, his wife, Joel has taken his love and passion and made it into something that all of us can own and enjoy. His creations fueled a generation into kite flying. His love of design and artistry in the wind created numerous award winning kite pilots such as Ray Bethell, who flies three of Joel’s Kestrel sport kites simultaneously and holds the world record for non-stop, multi-kite flying for 12 hours and 12 minutes. That’s what makes a person like Joel Scholz happy. It’s the love of the wind and flight itself that has given Joel the incentive to design world famous, award winning kites.


In 2001 Joel moved on. He licensed his creations to other companies and concentrated his efforts on the design and manufacture of remote controlled craft. But to say that Joel Scholz made an indelible mark on the kite world is a total understatement. From 1986 until 2001, Joel made some of the world’s finest and best performing kites. Every kite, whether it be single line, dual line or quad contains his passion, his very essence. Every kite from the stitching right down to the bridle contains a piece of his soul that embodies who he has been and continues to be… a world-renowned kite artist.

The next time you're at a park on a windy day and kites are flying in the distance, ask those kite pilots who made the kites they're flying. A good pilot always has a Joel Scholz kite in his bag.



Additional articles written by Robert Hilliard





To Fly A Kite

by Robert E. Hilliard
November 28, 2014


Kiting has an interesting history in the USA. It seems to have experienced a 20+ year popularity streak from the 1980's up until the early 2000's. During that time a great number of kite manufacturers sprung up and offered all types of kites for the public. The economy was strong and our past time as Americans appeared to gravitate to activities outside the home.

Sport kites also appeared to come into vogue. Sport kite teams were created and numerous kite competitions and festivals were held to accommodate the growing number of people getting into kiting as a hobby. Kite stores were opening up as well as individual kite makers building and offering all types of single-line, dual-line and specialty kites.

All the world was grand with kiting until about 2008. The downturn in the American economy began to cause many kite stores and manufacturers to go out of business. Kites that were once made in America were being manufactured in China to help cut costs and increase profits. In the mid 2000's the popularity of kiting seemed to wane as technology got more involved in our past time. Children, who normally spent their time outside, started staying indoors with their cell phones, computers and gaming units. Adults were affected also finding very little time for leisurely activities and hobbies. Kiting, as we know it, took a big popularity hit.

Today, there are still kite manufacturers in the USA, but you can probably count them on one hand and the ones that actually make their kites here in the states are even more scarce. Brick and mortar kite stores have been replaced with mobile kite units. Many stores reside online only under the auspices of Ebay offering a limited line of kites. Due to this decline, many in the kite community have been asking questions such as, "Will kiting ever return to its former glory?" and "What will it take to make kiting a popular hobby once again?" Many think as long as the economy is in the dumps, so kiting will be also. That could very well be true, but I tend to feel that as Americans, we might need a change in our lifestyle.

In my opinion, our lives have become too cluttered. Taking the time to relax and fly a kite, go fishing or even read a book seems to be far down the priority list. Maybe it's time we break away from our technological strongholds and focus on relaxing activities outside the home... like kite flying. To fly a kite, all you need is some wind, space and of course, a kite. Kiting is an excellent way to relieve stress. Try to attend some kite festivals and any kite club flying days at a local park. The benefits to your health and mental well-being just might be immeasurable. Maybe that's why kiting has been around for thousands of years. Will our bad economy continue? A flip of a coin might answer that. Will the downturn in kite popularity continue? It will as long as we let it.


Kite Search/Association/Historical/Misc

American Kitefliers Association (AKA) - World's biggest kite organization
Kite Event Calendar - American KiteFliers Association Calendar
KiteLife Magazine - Publication devoted to the sport of kite flying
World Kite Museum - Also Washington State Kite Festivals
kitemap.org - Find new places to fly, or add your own


Kite Organization/Forum/Informative Documents

BFK 1996 Online Catalog - Very good listing of older stunt kites for the late 1990's
AKA Kite Event Organizer Manual - AKA version on PDF
AKA Team Flying Manual - by Troy Gunn and Jerry Hershey
DAKO - Dallas Area Kitefliers Organization
KiteLife Forum - KiteLife Kite Forum
GWTW Forum - Gone With The Wind Kite Forum
Kite Guys Stunt Kites - Introduction to Stunt Kites
Ray Bethell Website - Multiple Kite World Champion
TKO Professional Sport Kite Team - Texas Kansas Oklahoma Professional Sport Kite Team - Facebook page
TKO Professional Sport Kite Team - Texas Kansas Oklahoma Professional Sport Kite Team - Website
International Sport Kite Compulsories Book - AKA Compulsories Book v2.2.1 All Teams from AKA Website
International Sport Kite Compulsories Book - All Teams on Reed Design Website
International Sport Kite Compulsories Book - Condensed for Single Dual-Line
Sport Kite Magic - Sport Kite Flying and Advanced Techniques by David Gomberg

Kite Online Retailers

Above It All Kites - Kite retailer - Long Beach, Washington
A Wind Of Change - Kite retailer and accessories - Salt Lake City, Utah
Big Mike's Kites - Kite retailer - Dallas, Texas
Chicago Kite - Kite retailer - Chicago, Illinois
Fun With Wind - Kite retailer - North Reading, Massachusetts
Gomberg Kite Productions - Show kites, inflatables, tails, line laundry, and banners - Neotsu, Oregon
Goodwinds - Kite accessories, rods and parts retailer - Mt. Vernon, Washington
Into The Wind - Kite retailer - Boulder, Colorado
Kites and Fun Things - Kite retailer - Plymouth, Michigan
Kite Loft - Kite retailer - Ocean City, Maryland
Kite Stop - Kite retailer - Titusville, Florida
Kitty Hawk Kites - Kite retailer - Nags Head, North Carolina
Wind Dance Kites - Kite retailer - Charleston, South Carolina
World Wind Kites - Kite retailer - Austin, Texas

Kite Manufacturers

AirDynamics - Custom Kite manufacturer and retailer - Hereford, United Kingdom
Benson Kites - Kite manufacturer - Bradford, United Kingdom
HQ Kites and Designs USA - Kite manufacturer - Powells Point, North Carolina
New Tech Kites - Kite manufacturer - Austin, Texas
Premier Kites - Kite manufacturer - Hyattsville, Maryland
Prism Kites - Kite manufacturer - Seattle, Washington
SkyDog Kites - Kite manufacturer - Colchester, Connecticut
Sky Burner Kites and Sky Shark Competition Air Frames - Kite manufacturer - Plymouth, Michigan

Kite Designers and Builders

Lam Hoac
Joel Scholz
Jerimy Colbert
George Peters
Kisa Kites Designs
Kathy Goodwind
Martin Lester
Martin Blais
Robert Brasington
Tiger Li
Buteo Huang
Peter Lynn



My love for kites goes beyond the weekend.



Fishing for Needle Fish with a kite.