SOURCE: Family Day Kite Festival

September 19, 2007 10:57 ET

Wind Power Makes History on San Francisco Bay

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - September 19, 2007) - The largest ship ever powered solely by a kite in U.S. waters -- a 308,000 lb. commercial barge -- glided across San Francisco Bay as part of the second annual Family Day Kite Festival on Saturday September 15, 2007. The enormous wind sail that pulled the vessel, a 3,000 sq. ft. traction kite designed by KiteShip of Martinez, California, was only one of the many astonishing and innovative kites flown at the festival.

Held on the panoramic Marina Green overlooking San Francisco Bay, the week-end festival included the broadest range of kites ever assembled, from paper kites made by local children to high-tech contraptions flown by professionals from across the United States; from one inch to over 600 feet in length; from stationary American diamond kites to fidgety and maneuverable Indian fighter kites.

While some flyers stood still to maneuver single, double and even four-line kites, others rode kite buggies (able to travel over 70 mph), kite boards that have skimmed the waves at 51 mph, kite boats that race through the water at up to 35 mph, and the historic kite ship, which traveled at a stately 3 mph.

A panel of celebrity judges picked winners of 8 contests:

Funniest: Rhonda Davidson -- "Blue Genie" -- a 7' wide, single-surface, modified cobra kite

Biggest: Blake Pelton -- "Neptune" -- a 49' long, inflated parafoil

Smallest: Susan Skinner (President of the American Kitefliers Association) -- "Butterfly in Pastel" -- a one inch long Butterfly Shield kite made from a cocktail napkin with a metallic thread tail

Longest Tail: Department of Tethered Aviation -- "The Red Line" -- a 637' long tail supported by a 20' wide inflated flowform

Most Innovative: Mike Hagan -- "EO" -- a 2' wide foldable, cellular EO6

Best Ground Display: David Sabilino -- "My Menagerie" -- an artistic assortment of feather banners and Wayne Knott kites

Most Beautiful: Mike Hagen -- "Marilyn" -- a 10' wide, three-stick diamond appliquéd image of Marilyn Monroe, including lace panties

Best of Show: Department of Tethered Aviation -- "The Red Line" -- a 670' long flowform with tapered tube tail

Founded by Ron Young, the AKA sanctioned Festival was honored with a special "Family Day in San Francisco" proclamation by Mayor Gavin Newsom. 3Degrees reduced the carbon footprint of the festival by donating 50 MWh (megawatt hours) of Renewable Energy Certificates from California wind farms. The event was sponsored by KRON 4, the Lawrence Hall of Science, Da Vinci: An Exhibition of Genius, Howtoons, Stage II Productions and Sage Communications.

For a full list of festival partners and activities, see

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