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46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival

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This festival has become the annual observance of a classic kite duel back in 1969. The Maharajah of Bharatpur, India challenged the Governor of Delaware to a kite-flying contest. When the date came, the Governor was out of town, so his Lt. Governor, Gene Bookhammer stepped in to take up the challenge.

Each of their lines was equipped with 12” of abrasive sand on the string near the kite. Fighting for position, Bookhammer’s kite was the victor, cutting the Maharajah’s line. The following year, he returned and once again Bookhammer came out the victor.

Ever since then, people have been bringing their own kites at the end of spring, and the Kite Festival has turned into the quasi-official opening of the summer season at Cape Henlopen State Park in Lewes, Delaware.

This year saw a range of competitions for children, teens and adults; with prizes for looks, height, stunt flying and ballet (the equivalent of ice-skating to music.) Hundreds braved the 45 degree temperatures and brisk winds to sail their homemade and store-bought kites on the parade grounds.

Astrid
Astrid by Doug Bardwell

Astrid

Astrid Bruening – age 4 – Wappingers Falls, NY in the Childrens’ Competition at the 46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival

Emma
Emma by Doug Bardwell

Emma

Emma Broggi – age 11 – Conshohocken, PA outside Philadelphia in the Childrens’ Competition at the 46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival

Lily June
Lily June by Doug Bardwell

Lily June

Lily June Farhi – age 9 months and mom Adeline Farhi – Westchester, PA - flying homemade bird lantern kite in the Childrens’ Competition at the 46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival.  Lily June was the youngest of the competitors.

Erkut
Erkut by Doug Bardwell

Erkut

Erkut Gokan came from Izmir, Turkey to compete in the 46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival. He took the award for the contestant coming from the farthest distance.

Bridget
Bridget by Doug Bardwell

Bridget

Bridget Griffith – age 10 - Takoma Park, MD  flying her homemade kite in the Childrens’ Competition at the 46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival

Dragon boat
Dragon boat by Doug Bardwell

Dragon boat

A store-bought dragon-boat kite with multiple sails flies over the 46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival in Lewes, Delaware at Cape Henlopen State Park.

Kaitlin
Kaitlin by Doug Bardwell

Kaitlin

Kaitlin Barron – age 9 - Burgunfield, NJ  flying blue triangle kite in the Childrens’ Competition at the 46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival

Shea
Shea by Doug Bardwell

Shea

Shea Danahy,  age 5, from Rehoboth Beach, DE flying Ladybug, the tiniest kite at the 46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival at Cape Henlopen State Park.

Maya
Maya by Doug Bardwell

Maya

Maya Griffith – age 13 – Takoma Park, in her second year flying precision kites in the Teenage Competition at the 46th Annual Great Delaware Kite Festival

Sun halo
Sun halo by Doug Bardwell

Sun halo

A high flying kite seems to fly into a 22 degree halo (sun halo) which formed above the kite flying field at Cape Henlopen State Park in Lewes, Delaware.

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