Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 90.djvu/759

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Flying Kites for Prizes

Los Angeles stimulates an interest in kite construction by holding an annual tournament

���"Charlie" takes a trip skyward. These kites, called boy kites, are awkward and longainly, but they appeal to the youngsters. They are not nearly so difficult to make as might be supposed

��EACH year the boys of Los Angeles gather on the Exposition Park grounds and hold a kite tournament. The events are scheduled for two o'clock on a Saturday afternoon, but some of the boys put in an appearance at nine o'clock in the morning. By the time the tourna- ment starts, contrary to the old adage, the early birds instead of winning the prizes have no kites to fly. They try out their kites so many times dur- ing the early hours that the kites go to pieces.

But the sky is fairly bedecked with flying con- traptions of all descrip- tions. Big kites, boxes, miniature editions, butter- flies, birds, animals, fishes, Charlie Chaplins, and other kinds innumerable make up the display. Each year there is a greater variety. The tournament has been an annual event for nine years. There are fewer large kites now than in former years, largely due to the risk of breakage incurred

���in transporting them to the flying grounds. However, some large ones still appear and they never fail to call forth admiration.

Miniature aeroplanes are giving way to kites, which have a more fantastic appear- ance; but the number of hot-air balloons is decreasing. The temptation to ascertain the effect of a nicely aimed rock on a frail balloon is too strong to be resisted. Consequently the balloons must be guarded against attack. In the tourna- ment held last year many patriotic balloon and kite designs appeared. Most of these had some refer- ence to peace.

In preparing for a tour- nament, an announcement is sent to each school in the city, giving the time and place of meeting. The classes and events are scheduled so that the boys may know what to plan for. I'sually suggestions accom- pany the bulletins that are sent out from time to time; A registration is held at

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