Pacific Coast Air Museum
Even if you’re not an aviation buff, the Pacific Coast Air Museum (2230 Becker Blvd., Santa Rosa, 707/575-7900, http://pacificcoastairmuseum.org, Tues., Thurs., Sat.–Sun. 10 a.m.–4 p.m.) is worth a stop. Through interpretive and photographic exhibits, learn about the history of aviation in America.
Spend some time studying the cutaways and bits and pieces to enhance your understanding of the mechanics of powered flights. And finally, fantasize about flying the fine examples of F-series fighters and many other military and civilian aircraft on display. Many of the planes here are examples of modern war machines—such as those you’d see on the deck of an aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf today.
Or if you prefer to see civilian craft, check out the funky little Pitts aerobatic plane, the sort of thing you’ll see doing impossible-looking tricks during the museum’s annual Wings over Wine Country air show, held each August.
© Liz Hamill Scott from Moon California, 2nd Edition