By Cameron Rasmusson
A staple of local education and entrepreneurship is packing up and heading south.
The Bird Aviation Museum and Invention Center, a museum celebrating America’s great achievements in flight and technological innovation, is relocating to Pappy Boyington Field at the Coeur d’Alene Airport, located at 2678 West Cessna Ave. While local fans of the museum may be disappointed to see it move, the transition could actually improve accessibility, allowing it to stay open year-round.
“The move is bittersweet as we have called the Bird Ranch home for the past 12 years and are ready to embrace the change,” museum officials posted on their Facebook page.
Located miles down a dusty road in Sagle, the Aviation Museum and Invention Center’s previous location at the Bird Ranch was difficult to access during the winter, requiring it to close during inhospitable weather. That was a disappointment for fans eager to see the center’s impressive collection of airplanes, invention prototypes and informative exhibits on America’s greatest inventors. Moving the museum’s huge inventory is no simple task, but the staff is working toward a June 1 reopening.
“Thank you to our amazing staff, volunteers and supporters who have stuck with us through thick and thin,” read the Facebook post. “All of you are truly amazing!”
The Bird Aviation Museum and Invention Center was a passion project for Drs. Forrest and Pamela Bird. Forrest Bird, who passed away in 2015, was a pilot and inventor who revolutionized flight and medicine with his innovations in respirator technology. Pamela Bird, Forrest’s wife, was a commercialization expert, author and entrepreneur advocate who died tragically in a plane crash just months after her husband’s death.
“The museum will be able to continue the legacy the founders, Drs. Forrest & Pamela Bird left behind,” the Facebook post read. “We are looking forward to this next chapter and have already started packing.”
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