Enthusiasts brave the rain to attend the DeKalb Kite Fest


An festival attendee wrangles three kites Sunday at the North 40 for the DeKalb Kite Fest.

By Lucas Skye

Fewer kite enthusiasts than normal sloshed across the field on a rainy Sunday to celebrate the DeKalb Kite Fest.

Sunday marked the 14th annual DeKalb Kite Fest. The event took place 11 to 4 p.m. at North 40, the field across from Barsema Hall.

Those who attended brought their own kites or watched as professional flyers synchronized their kites to music in a separate section of the field.

“It really is a special event, and it’s one of the most family friendly events in the community,” Brad Hoey, Chair of the DeKalb county convention visitors board, said.

Attendance was lower than previous years, due to rain during the first half of the event.

“Traditionally, this event attracts thousands of flyers from all ages,” Hoey said. “The weather, unfortunately, is kind of diminishing our participation this year.”

Despite the rain and overcast sky, attendants said they enjoyed themselves, citing a variety of reasons why they like Kite Fest.

“It’s a very social event,” Alan Sparling, showcase flyer and former regional director for the American Kite Flying Association, said. Sparling started kiting because of festivals similar to DeKalb’s Kite Fest. “I flew a quad line at a festival that I just stopped by and enjoyed it.”

A majority of those attending brought their families along.

“It’s a well put on event, gives the kids something to do,” said Sean Woyna, a spectator. “What’s your favorite part?” he asked his daughter. “The ice cream!” she said.

The enthusiasm was mirrored by the performers at the event.

“I’ve been flying for six years,” said Brett Marshell, a performer at the event. “There’s just something about kiting. There’s nothing else to pay attention [to]; there [are] no worries of the world. It goes out with the kite.”