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Lorraine Achey, FINGERS, ELBOWS, AND NECKS, OH MY! (Or…how to magically soothe kiteflying aches without seeing the Wizard!) In this class, Lorraine Achey, a Licensed Massage Therapist, will teach how you can use simple pressure points to manage pain and stiffness related to kiteflying. Learn to soothe sore wrists, arms, necks, and backs to keep your body more limber and/or improve your performance. Tennis balls and handouts will be included.

Christian Baden Powell, APPLIQUE THE CBP WAY:  Two sessions to learn how to design and create exquisite ripstop appliqués with multiple colors, tracing paper, and hot knife.  A hands-on demonstration with a light table. No sewing required.
Ronda Brewer, DEMYSTIFYING KNOTS: Throughout the ages, humans have used knots and knotting techniques to give more form and function to their lives.  It is not only important to know what knots to use for different applications, but also what line or rope to use as well. In this class, we will discuss the different aspects of knot assembly – parts, names, techniques, and usages.  Then, we will have hands-on practice with a troubleshooting session.
Jon Burkhardt, JUDGING HANDMADE KITES: Two sessions, one before the competitions and one after. Participants can meet the judges, find out what they are looking for, and how they determine who wins.
Scott Davis, SPORT KITE SYMPOSIUM: An opportunity to meet with members of the sport kite committee and judges to ask questions, make suggestions, discuss rules, and offer ideas and direction for promoting the sport.

There has been a noticeable decline in the numbers of kitemakers in our community. Some of the kitemaking retreats across the country are thriving while others are not. The reward of sharing your skills and wisdom with someone new is unlike any other accomplishment you may have in kiting. It is a great experience to see a new person grow and even perhaps see some of your influence in their work. Whether you see yourself as a potential mentor with the desire “to give back” or as a newbie needing some guidance, this workshop is for you. Ideas, tips, and guidance will be offered and then we will connect people. Let’s keep what we all love so much alive and the flame burning. It’s a lot more fun doing it with others than alone.
Gary Goodenough, BAMBOO AND PAPER: Participants will use two or three pieces of raw bamboo to make the bones of a kite. Learn the practices and tools utilized to shape, taper, and heat-bend bamboo for making spars and spines. Bring your ideas for creating one-of-a-kind kite design. We may not have time for sail making in this class. Bamboo will be furnished. Participants should bring ruler, white glue, thread, pocket knife, pencil, sandpaper, and a small block plane if available.
Chuck Jones, MAKE AND TAKE A GENKI:  Make a small Genki kite capable of flying indoors or in light breezes. All materials provided including: skin, bamboo spreader, grass spars, and tail. Kite is 27 inches wide and 9 inches tall.  It folds for transport.  
Lindsey Johnson and Ronda Brewer, MAKE AND TAKE SEAGULL KITE: Be one with the flock. Assemble and decorate your own 72” Star Bird kite. No sewing required. The kit includes all the parts and pieces such as Pre-cut Tyvek panels, fiberglass spars, adhesive backed Dacron reinforcements, a dihedral fitting, and vinyl end caps (cost: $25.00).  
Decorating suggestions will be presented, and if time permits, art supplies will be on hand for you to have some fun ‘dressing’ your bird.  The realistic wing movement and occasional tumbling mimics life-like flight action. Onlookers and birds of all kinds come to check this kite out when it takes to the air. It’s not a “murder of crows” nor a “gaggle of geese” but you could build enough to have your own “colony of gulls.”
Deb Lenzen, LESSONS OF A KITEMAKER: Lenzen will share tips, tricks, knowledge and perhaps even a little wisdom she has learned making kites over the last 20 years.  With her Prayer Feather Kite as an example, she will discuss appliqué and piecework techniques for sail crafting; bamboo and carbon for framing; and the implementation of the cascade bridle for flight stability. She will focus on the value of participating in the AKA Grand National Kitemaking Competition and share tips to help future competitors show their kites in the best possible light. Attendees will leave the session with paper and/or digital instructions to make their own Prayer Feather Kite.
Nic O’Neill, HOW TO WORK WITH SOCIAL MEDIA: Learn the nuts and bolts of marketing your kite event or business through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or one of the other major social media platforms.  This class is especially helpful for kite clubs.
Jim Powers, KITE AERIAL PHOTOGRAPHY (KAP): A unique look into the world of working kites; this is a show-and-tell of KAP equipment, photos, and how to get started in KAP.
Craig Rodgerson, APPLIQUE ROUND TABLE: This workshop will be open for sharing appliqué techniques and will have one sewing machine available for participants to try ideas.  Pattern transfer and color planning will be featured. Participants are invited to share tricks that make their projects easier and more enjoyable.
Jon Trennepohl, FLYING TO MUSIC: Whether you want to win a ballet competition or just fly with your headphones on, choreography makes all the difference. Learn how to pick music that matches your kiteflying style and, equally important, how to plan a routine that is truly in sync with the music. This will be a demonstration class in the indoor flying arena. Bring your kite or watch and learn.
Cliff Quinn, SHARE THE JOY OF KITEMAKING WITH KIDS: You have the ability to share and spread the joy of kites with children today, just like you experienced it as a child. In this class, Cliff will share his experience in teaching in schools, non-profits, and dozens of other youth organizations. Want to give back? He’ll show you how to do it while having you make a kid’s kite in the process.
Susie Jo Skinner, MAKING MINIATURE KITES: Make a miniature kite with the 2018 AKA Convention logo, complete with carrying case and flying stick. Kites will be made with tissue paper and nylon spars. All supplies and tools will be provided.
Phillip Whitaker, A FIRST TIMER’S GUIDE TO THE CONVENTION: Is this your first AKA Convention?  This workshop is an opportunity to meet other kiteflyers and hear ways to get the most from a convention experience.
Sewing workshops, BRING YOUR OWN SEWING MACHINE:  Last year the AKA convention held hands-on sewing workshops for the first time. They were a big success and this year we’ve expanded the offering of classes and the time to sew. A dedicated room for the sewing machines will be available in the mornings for classes and in the afternoons for individuals to work on their own. When not in use, the room will be locked for security.
In addition to their machine, attendees should plan to bring accessory tools such as scissors, straight edge, thread, and etc.  Most sewing projects will require pre-purchase materials. In order to facilitate this, we strongly recommend that you email us at requesting the required materials list for any of the projects listed below.  Members are welcome to attend these classes even if they don’t have a machine or arrangements can be made to rent a sewing machine locally by contacting Steve at The Sewing Shop @ 318-869-1739. (Cost of $45/week for AKA members.)
Mitch Cordover, SEW A DRAGON TAIL: This “Dragon Tail” sewing project is a train of four drogues that each empty into the one behind. The last bucket is adjustable to make it easy to deploy and easy to break down. It produces moderate to high drag.
Made with ripstop nylon, this is a beginner to intermediate level project. It will require clips, pins, tape or whatever your favorite method is for securing a seam for sewing.
More advanced sewists have the possibility to appliqué the project.
Mike Dertien, FROM PAPER TO SAIL:  There are a lot of kitemaking plans available from books and the Internet. However, many of these plans assume pre-existing knowledge or experience converting a diagram into cloth. This class will help provide that knowledge with practical guidance on the following: seam allowances, making patterns, cutting fabric, sewing seams, stitch styles, pockets, and more. (This class is for all levels.)
Jose Sainz and Scott Skinner, EVERYTHING YOU EVER WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT APPLIQUÉ AND PATCHWORK BUT WERE AFRAID TO ASK: Two days of sewing classes with Jose and Scott as they help students create an unique “half-and-half” Hata kite.  Each will present slide shows of their unique creations and work that has influenced them. They will then guide students using their particular sewing techniques—Jose’s appliqué, Scott’s patchwork–to make mirrored halves that will then be sewn together into a very unique Hata kite.
(This is a partial list of the workshops to be offered. For a variety of reasons, workshops may change, be canceled or replaced without notice.)