Welcome the 25’th Annual AKA Convention in Ocean City, MD
The 2002 Comprehensive Kitemaking Competition:

This year’s event will run much as it did last year. We will again hold a PRE competition meeting to review the rulebook and to go over the procedures of the competition. I urge all those who will be entering a kite into competition to attend this meeting. Members from the Kitemaking Competition Committee will be available as well as Judges who will be scoring your kites.  Bring your ideas, bring your concerns, and bring your questions.  We will do our best to answer them.  We will also host a meeting after the competition to review the event and ask for your feedback for ways to improve next year. Please refer to you convention program for meeting places and times.

One of the biggest changes for 2001 was the creation of a new category titled “Line Art.” This was not heavily competed last year, but I feel it still has a lot of potential, so I will run it again this year. At every festival, I see large quantities of unique and really cool line items and themes being made by kite builders. The committee created “Line Art” to reward the skills that go into the creation of these objects. So, if you have line laundry, line junk, or anything else that hangs on your line, bring it to the competition. The only requirement is that is has to be hand made. The ‘official’ definition of the category is:

"Line Art is a lifter kite and everything attached to its line.  The builder is free to use his imagination and is limited only by his creativity and what the lifter kite can raise.  As in every other category, the entry will be judged for Flight, Visual Appeal, Craftsmanship, and Structural Design.  With all things being equal, the entry using a home made kite will be judged higher than the entry with a manufactured kite.”

The Flat & Bowed category has been split into separate categories to accommodate the increasing popularity of these types of kites. Basically, if the kite has any kind of dihedral, it is considered bowed. Flat kites usually require some type of tail. If you are unsure what category your kite belongs in, please ask before the competition begins.

The rest of the competition will run as described in the AKA’s Rules and Guidelines for Kitemakers’ Competitions, Third Edition.  Partial rulebooks are available for free at the AKA website, or you can purchase a complete hardcopy for $5.00 at the AKA store.  The competition will run Wednesday and Thursday, October 2-3.  (Please refer to your convention program for any changes to seminar or competition schedules) We will be awarding first, second, and third place trophies in the following categories at these designated times:

Wednesday October 2, 2002

1:30      Soft or Flexible Kites
2:00      Figure Kites
2:30      Bowed Kites
3:00      Flat Kites
3:30      Trains & Centipedes
4:00      Stunt Kites
4:30      Arches & Ribbons

Thursday October 3, 2002

1:30    Line Art
2:00      Cellular & Dimensional
2:30      Delta & Delta Derivatives
3:00      Rokkaku
3:30      Fighter Kites
4:00      Open (for kites that do not fit in any of the above categories)

We encourage cooperatively built kites and have a separate category.  Cooperative kites are defined as kites that are made by more than one person with significant contributions by all parties. They will be judged by the criteria appropriate for the type of kite entered. So, if a kite club is entering a cooperatively built Rokkaku, it would entered into the Cooperative category but it will fly  with the other Rokkaku’s on Thursday at 3:00.

In addition to the above categories, we will be honoring the usual Special Awards:
Best Use of Traditional Materials
Most Innovative
Mixed Media
Novice 1st, 2nd, 3rd
Special Recognition
Awards for the highest score in each of the four criteria
Grand National Champion 

I will remind you that every kite will receive a total score that will come from an even 25% in four criteria:  Visual Appeal, Flight, Craftsmanship, and Structural Design.  Each category will begin promptly and will start with a mass ascension from the ground (with the exception of Line Art & Arches/Ribbons). No pre-registration is necessary, however, YOU MUST SIGN UP 45 MINUTES BEFORE THE BEGINNING OF YOUR SCHEDULED CATEGORY.  In the event that there are too few entrants in any category we may hold an “Open / Combined Category” as the last class of the competition on Thursday afternoon. 

Good luck!

~Steve Ferrel, Head Judge