Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Flying Heritage Collection Memorial Day Event

On Memorial Day, May 31, the Flying Heritage Collection will unveil the newest additions to the collection – two fully operational tanks, the Soviet T-34 and the Jagdpanzer 38(t).

The Soviet T-34 tank is widely-considered one of the best tanks ever built and was produced more than any other tank by any other nation during World War II. In total more than 84,000 rolled off the assembly line, with a number of technological advancements and model upgrades. Although it was not the fastest or heaviest tank in the Red Army service, designers struck a winning balance with the T-34, equipping the medium tank with a large cannon and thick, sloping armor while still allowing for mobility and speed. The T-34 tank is painted in the colors of a vehicle that fought in Belarus in January 1945 and the slogan on its side translates “For General Bagramian”—the famous Soviet Marshal of the 3rd Belarusian Front in 1945.

The Jagdpanzer 38(t) tank, also know as Hetzer, was one of the most common late-war German tank destroyers. Its small size made it easy to be concealed. It was available in relatively large numbers and was considered mechanically reliable. The Hetzer’s weaknesses were its very limited gun movement and poor visibility -— the entire vehicle sometimes needed to be turned to track a fast-moving target. The Hetzer is in the paint scheme of a “tank hunter” battalion that participated in the Battle of the Bulge in the winter of 1944.

The Soviet T-34 tank will drive and fire at 12 p.m.; the Flak 88, a famous WWII artillery weapon, will fire at 1 p.m.; the Hetzer will drive and fire at 2 p.m. Following Memorial Day, both tanks will be permanently displayed at the collection.

Along with the FHC’s new tanks, the Memorial Day event will showcase military vehicles and weapons from the Puget Sound Military Vehicle Collectors Club. The exhibit will be open from 10 am to 5 pm for Flying Heritage Collection visitors.

WHERE: Flying Heritage Collection, Paine Field, 3407 109th Street SW, Everett, WA 98204· Free parking is available in the Flying Heritage Collection parking lot.

COST: Entrance to the Memorial Day tank & military vehicle exhibit is included with admission. Veterans receive free admission on Memorial Day. FHC admission prices are: Adults $12, Seniors/Military: $10; Youths (6-15): $8; Children (5 and under) are free; Groups (15 or more) are $10 per person.

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