By Bill Eichelberger



Back in 1977, a friend who lived two doors up from me launched what I think was an Estes Scout from his backyard.  A group of us were there to watch and expected the typical big explosion as the finale, but we were told that despite what looked like an M80 being loaded into the back end, the explosion wouldn't be destructive, but would factor in the rocket coming back.  Yeah, right.  History insists that it flew on a C6-5, which I have since come to doubt, but the flight ended with a successful recovery (albeit with a broken fin,) and ever kid who watched talking their parents into taking them to J.C. Penney Toyland after dinner that night.  I was too late to get the one and only Rogue and wound up with a Beta, as did my brother.  We spent that night and the next day building and painting our rockets.  Dave did his in white with metallic burgundy and metallic lime stripes while I painted mine just like the face card, beginning a tradition that continues to this day.