A Day To Play

 Posted by at 1:18 am  Nick's Blog
Aug 292014

I love my job and I can’t think of anything I’d rather be doing with my life. In fact, sometimes I think that sooner or later Big Brother is going to decide that it’s just not right for anyone to have that much fun, and get paid for it too, and come and get me and take me away.

Even so, sometimes I just have to take a day off and play, and yesterday was just such a day. Last week I learned that John Barresi would be holding a kite flying clinic this Sunday at Sam Lewis State Park in York, just 30 miles from the campground and put it on my calendar as “Can’t Miss” event. John is a superstar in the world of high performance stunt kites and a 25 time US National Champion who teaches and competes all over the world. He also had some time available for private lessons, and after a lot of encouragement (nagging) from Miss Terry, I contacted John and reserved time for a three hour lesson.

John NIck lesson

Nick John flying Rev

While I got the hang of my dual line Prism Snapshot 1.9 speed foil kite pretty easily, the quad line Revolution kite is a very different animal and even after watching all the videos and getting advice for several experienced fliers online, it just wasn’t clicking for me. Try as I might, I’d get the kite up a few feet and it would turn left and crash. I was completely discouraged and about to give up on the Rev and stick with my speed foil.

But within 15 minutes John had me flying, and by the time we were done I was flying the kite, even doing some basic maneuvers like flying it sideways and hovering in midair. I learned more in those three hours than I have in the last year, and came away with a lot more knowledge and confidence and totally enthused about flying again.

Nick flying Rev

Rev sideways

John is an incredibly patient and competent instructor who makes you feel comfortable and explains techniques in language the student can understand. If you get into high performance stunt kites and you ever get the chance to take a class with him, do it. It’s time and money well spent.

Here is John and his beautiful wife TK. She is also an expert Rev flier.

John and TK

TK flying

TK flying 3

To give you an idea of what they are capable of, here is a link to a video of John and his I Quad stunt flying team at a festival in Oregon. Take the time to watch it, it’s amazing.

Besides all of the fun flying, the views of the Susquehanna River were wonderful.

But here was the best view I saw all day.

Terry Penna 2014 2

While those three hours of kite flying were a lot of fun, by the time we got home my sore shoulders and back were making me well aware that I’m not a kid anymore.

Have you entered our new Free Drawing yet? This week’s prize is an audiobook of The Package: Book One by my friend Cleve Sylcox. It’s a classic detective noir short story featuring a hardnosed private eye, a shady lawyer, a femme fatale, and a whole lot of trouble. To enter, all you have to do is click on the Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.


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Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  7 Responses to “A Day To Play”

  1. That video makes one thing twice about kites…………Just wow!!

  2. I wonder if I could do get one in the air. I noticed that the photo shows storage bags in front of them. Do the kits fold up for travel?

  3. So great to read of you living your dream and having so much fun!!!

  4. That video was amazing! Keep practicing Nick and pretty soon you’ll be part of that precision flying team.

  5. Jan, They easily fold and in each of those storage bags are several kites. I think John must have a dozen or so and TK has at least 6 or 7, plus they have extra carbon frame pieces, extra specialty handles and different lengths of cord/string for different flying situations, plus a couple of cloths for wiping things down. They are extremely lightweight and easy to manage.

  6. Amazing video. Being a practical thinking engineering type, all through the video I was wondering how they kept the strings from getting intertwined!

    At your next rally……… I know you are thinking about it, maybe you will be able to put on a similar show, with a kite that Terry wove for you!!

    Safe travels, Nick!

  7. Uh oh … if you were having trouble with your Rev, I know I will too. Guess I better track John down … or just take lessons from you! Sounds like a money making idea to me!!! So glad he got you flying Nick!!

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