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Ride Into History With Amelia Earhart

Hugo Phan

Famed aviator Amelia Earhart will come to life through a performance on Saturday at Bethel College in North Newton. Historian and scholar Ann Birney will portray Earhart in celebration of Kansas Day. KMUW’s Carla Eckels reports…

Amelia Earhart was a native of Atchison, Kansas. She was the first woman pilot to fly solo across the Atlantic, and over the Pacific. She flew non-stop across the U.S. faster than any other woman. 

Credit Hugo Phan
Birney portraying Amelia Earhart

For 20 years, Kansan Ann Birney, of Ride into History, has portrayed Earhart based on extensive research. Birney has performed all over the country including at the Smithsonian.

At a school in Derby recently, as Earhart, she explains flying across the Atlantic Ocean in 1932, where she encounters mechanical trouble, landing in Ireland instead of France.

"I didn’t care, I didn’t care," she exclaimed in character. "I had flown across the ocean. I had never felt more like saying 'Ta-da!' And that’s what I’m hoping about this upcoming flight around the world at its waistband."

Earhart set out to fly around the world at the equator. She disappeared somewhere over the Pacific Ocean in 1937, a mystery still unsolved.

Ann Birney will perform as Amelia Earhart at Krehbiel Auditorium in the Luyken Fine Arts Center at Bethel College in North Newton on Saturday, January 31 at 11am. There is no cost for the event.

For the full list of Kansas Day events at Bethel college, see the document below:



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Follow Carla Eckels on Twitter, @Eckels