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Ian, it's reminds me of the events I go to in Switzerland, very multi period. Probably like everywhere else, the earlier you arrive at an event, the better your chances are of getting a good plot of land for your display. I'll be going to one the last weekend of June, and I'm almost positive the 101st Airborne will also be there. :lol:

Couple guys I know will doing a Falklands display. ;)

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Ian, it's reminds me of the events I go to in Switzerland, very multi period. Probably like everywhere else, the earlier you arrive at an event, the better your chances are of getting a good plot of land for your display. I'll be going to one the last weekend of June, and I'm almost positive the 101st Airborne will also be there. :lol:

Couple guys I know will doing a Falklands display. ;)

 

 

That's very apposite Pat because this year marks the 30th anniversary of the Falklands War.

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willysmb44

SOT’s post makes some very good points and I agree with all of them. I have never understood the whole, “I once served so somehow I have more right than you to wear an obsolete uniform” argument. Yes, I served. I think that gives me a slightly better insight to how people act in garrison and in the field, but that’s really where my experience is any different than someone who never served. The only time it comes in handy is when we’re doing displays and the public is looking for a reason why I’m doing this. They often ask if I’ve served and when I say I have, everything clicks into place for them. I’ve never understood that, either. It’s not like I was actually IN WW2, so what difference does it make?

Airborne re-enactors have a big problem with this. You get a group of them together and I promise you that any of them who went to real jump school or served in an airborne unit will Lord it over all those who didn’t. And if you point out that all of you are in the same boat because none of you were in WW2 doing that, the people who’ve jumped from a C-130 at 500 feet at Benning will turn on you faster than a rabid dog. I know, because it’s happened to me twice. You can’t tell them that their five peacetime jumps isn’t the same as jumping into France, Holland or Germany in WW2. I think I gave a 1980s 82nd vet a stroke when I suggested it once. The guy was never quite right after I made that point to him.

The irony is that I would never have gotten an Airborne impression had I not lived in a very hot and humid climate for most of my life. I grew up in Florida, the only WW2 re-enactor for over 100 miles in any direction that I knew of. I started with a infantry impression but roasted in summer public events, so I got a M42 jump suit which was cooler. I also scored a Dick Kos repro M-2 at Indiantown Gap back when you could get one for about $75. That’s the only reason I ever got into it. In recent years, I think I’ve hauled out the AB stuff maybe once or twice, otherwise I’m back to being a “leg.” In the past few years, I’ve thrown myself into rear echelon of non-combatant stuff. You should see the reaction of the public when they see me armed only with a typewriter and then they look at the ‘high speed killer Airborne’ guys. When they discover I was an Army Captain and most the “AB” guys never served a day in their lives (there is one AB guy who was real life AB and is a decent guy), it really confuses the heck out of them!

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Jack's Son

WOW.....these posts are getting long and "heady". I may have to take my pad into the throne-room, where I have more time to spend reading!! :lol:

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Let me revive this thread by throwing something else into the mix for discussion. Where do you stand on the subject of "promenaders" as opposed to what I referred to previously as bona fide reenactors? By the latter I mean properly organised and equipped living history groups. By the former I mean those individuals who might not be affiliated to any group but who just turn up at events in a uniform/costume of some sort and simply "promenade" among the crowds. I began the thread by expressing my concern about the plethora of "506ths" which seems to be becoming the dominant sub-group within the hobby these days. At the show I attended last weekend I lost count of the number of 101st "promenaders" who weren't actually doing anything to educate the show-goers other than wandering around rather aimlessly in uniform.

 

Here's an example of what I mean. This "Star-trooper-like" apparition was wandering around at last year's War & Peace show here in the UK. As a collector myself I stopped and engaged him in conversation about his gear. I could tell he was delighted that someone had actually noticed him and taken an interest in his impression. He was a pleasant young lad who must've spent £££s on his gear. Turned out he was there as an individual...not as a part of an organized group. In other words, just "promenading". Of course, he was not alone in this. All over the show ground there were other individuals doing likewise...101st paratroopers...various SS...British Commandos etc. (always seems to be elite units!) I suppose they add a splash of colour to an event but I can't help feeling that they would be better employed if they were members of organized groups. Just my take on it.

 

post-8022-1336468377.jpg

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jumpwings
I'm a regular show-goer here in the UK. In fact, I've just returned from "Fortress Wales 2012", a very pleasant, multi-period living history event set against the spectacular backdrop of Caldicot Castle. (I'll post some pics when I've edited them) American subjects were very well represented ranging from The Wild West > Civil War > WW2 > Vietnam War. The various campsites were very well set out...plenty of attention to detail etc...but here comes my plea. Why can't WW2 re-enactors see beyond the 101st Airborne?! Seems that virtually every show I attend is over-populated with wannabe paratroopers ranging in age from 10 > 70!! Are we still in the grips of "Band of Brothers" fever?! Is it down to the convenient "off the shelf" availability of almost everything you need to dress up as a D-Day paratrooper? I looked closely at the various "Screamin' Eagles" and can confidently say that probably 90% of their gear is repro...everything from their jumpsuits to their M1s. Looks ok from a distance but won't stand close inspection.

 

I felt/feel like saying "There was more to the US Army in WW2 than paratroopers!" Where are the armored troops...the regular infantry...medic detachments...artillerymen...signals etc. I could go on, but you catch my drift? I don't know about the reenacting scene in the US, but I daresay the airborne is probably at risk of becoming over-represented there too? So, come on guys...a little more originality...please? Thank you! :thumbsup:

 

I feel a similar gripe, why is it always about guns, and why in the many photo displays are they constantly pointing the gun at the camera?? And why always nice and clean and pristine, it's especially silly looking when they are in a fox hole? They spend a million pounds/dollars on tiny wee bits of cloth, but still go to the burger van, I've spent thousands of £s and man hours to develop a decent looking ration display and they're not interested!

 

Ye want out the box? We've (the FSSF-UK) have done an aid station before any "combat/SF" units done it, and recent years we done a laundry, field kitchen, and mechanics display, we've done the Goumiers (not a great one I admit)... But anyway, there ye go, had it in wargaming many years ago, there was always an army fielded which had loads of gucci elite units...

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Johan Willaert

I like to do a Pvt Prewitt at the 'New Congress Club' impression... preferably without any other men present.... :pinch:

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jumpwings
SOT’s post makes some very good points and I agree with all of them. I have never understood the whole, “I once served so somehow I have more right than you to wear an obsolete uniform” argument. Yes, I served. I think that gives me a slightly better insight to how people act in garrison and in the field, but that’s really where my experience is any different than someone who never served. The only time it comes in handy is when we’re doing displays and the public is looking for a reason why I’m doing this. They often ask if I’ve served and when I say I have, everything clicks into place for them. I’ve never understood that, either. It’s not like I was actually IN WW2, so what difference does it make?

Airborne re-enactors have a big problem with this. You get a group of them together and I promise you that any of them who went to real jump school or served in an airborne unit will Lord it over all those who didn’t. And if you point out that all of you are in the same boat because none of you were in WW2 doing that, the people who’ve jumped from a C-130 at 500 feet at Benning will turn on you faster than a rabid dog. I know, because it’s happened to me twice. You can’t tell them that their five peacetime jumps isn’t the same as jumping into France, Holland or Germany in WW2. I think I gave a 1980s 82nd vet a stroke when I suggested it once. The guy was never quite right after I made that point to him.

The irony is that I would never have gotten an Airborne impression had I not lived in a very hot and humid climate for most of my life. I grew up in Florida, the only WW2 re-enactor for over 100 miles in any direction that I knew of. I started with a infantry impression but roasted in summer public events, so I got a M42 jump suit which was cooler. I also scored a Dick Kos repro M-2 at Indiantown Gap back when you could get one for about $75. That’s the only reason I ever got into it. In recent years, I think I’ve hauled out the AB stuff maybe once or twice, otherwise I’m back to being a “leg.” In the past few years, I’ve thrown myself into rear echelon of non-combatant stuff. You should see the reaction of the public when they see me armed only with a typewriter and then they look at the ‘high speed killer Airborne’ guys. When they discover I was an Army Captain and most the “AB” guys never served a day in their lives (there is one AB guy who was real life AB and is a decent guy), it really confuses the heck out of them!

 

It's the "Ive done it for real" guys, well HELLO! "no you haven't, you haven't jumped from an aeroplane wi flak bouncing all around ye into VERY dangerous territory, and no, ye haven't ran off a landing craft wi thousands of yer fellows servicemen dropping and being blown to bits all around ye facing a very experienced and highly motivated enemy, in an itchy scratchy uniform and kit that is basically crap, no, ye haven't done it for real"... :think:

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jumpwings

And then of course, it seems no one has any imagination to do an impression away from "d-day" "Arnhem" or "the Bulge"... Some wouldn't even know what the "D" in "D-Day" stands for :rolleyes:

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101st...yes. But in a VN scenario, therefore different! :thumbsup:

 

post-8022-1336481862.jpg

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BTW...the previous scenarios are all by British reenactment groups.

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Just as an FYI, some of US on this side of the pond portray YOU as well. I am a private (have been for 20 years-ready for Chelsea!) in His Majesty's Independent Company of South Carolina. The French and Indian (Seven Years) War is one of those eras that gets little attention here so I echo your original argument and agree.

I portray a Signal Corps photographer (have Speed Graphic, will travel) otherwise.

Fielding

post-1646-1336495654.jpg

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Just as an FYI, some of US on this side of the pond portray YOU as well. I am a private (have been for 20 years-ready for Chelsea!) in His Majesty's Independent Company of South Carolina. The French and Indian (Seven Years) War is one of those eras that gets little attention here so I echo your original argument and agree.

I portray a Signal Corps photographer (have Speed Graphic, will travel) otherwise.

Fielding

 

Is that so Fielding? I like the individual "niche" impressions such as your Signal Corps photographer, or War Correspondents, Chaplains and MPs etc., all important cogs in the big machine! Not everyone was armed to the teeth! :thumbsup:

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cutiger83

Ian,

 

These are some great pictures! Thanks so much for posting them.

 

This show looks very big. Is it an annual Military Show? How many people attend the show?

 

Thanks, Kat

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Ian,

 

These are some great pictures! Thanks so much for posting them.

 

This show looks very big. Is it an annual Military Show? How many people attend the show?

 

Thanks, Kat

 

 

Hi Kat. Yes...massive! In fact, Europe's biggest event..."War & Peace", held annually at Beltring, Kent. Here's a link.

 

http://www.warandpeaceshow.co.uk/

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"It's the "Ive done it for real" guys, well HELLO! "no you haven't, you haven't jumped from an aeroplane wi flak bouncing all around ye into VERY dangerous territory, and no, ye haven't ran off a landing craft wi thousands of yer fellows servicemen dropping and being blown to bits all around ye facing a very experienced and highly motivated enemy, in an itchy scratchy uniform and kit that is basically crap, no, ye haven't done it for real"... " Quoted from Jumpwings...7 May 2012, Today, 02:56 AM

 

 

 

 

Well hello again....yes some of us may practiced for years without seeing the elephant, some have gone out and comeback unscathed to a normal life (...I think that here in the States there is too much emphasis on post-traumatic stress, victimization and feelings....look at who was elected commisar in cheif..), but that is not the point. What seems to be the problem with some is that the presence of the untutored and misinformed and show-boaters is an anathema to them, those of the "Well I only buy my kit at ........ and ........!" ilk. Reading the "living/undead history" rants at At The Front is something they will never admit to, but it keeps the rest of us smiling, with the look of the those endowed with the great secret of never caring. Really, if you enjoy what you are doing, that is all that matters. Do a good job and speak well of others when you talk to the crowd. How horrified or mystified would those in the crowd be if they read these forums. I have collected a long time, but grimmace and have to smile when some osprey-internet-expert tells me that a thus and such is reproduced 'cause he read it on a forum where all the others were in agreement..:) There is always someone smarter than you, someone who has "done it", someone better than you. Just have fun. Heck, the most fun guy at a Roman Legion event is the one who will use a cool "Romanized" like Biggus Diccus, Michael Palin be praised! Check some of these Abn reenactor unit websites for a giggle. Here you can find a gallery of photos, ranked by rank...?...along with their names, and their...nicknames! Or alter-ego-impression names, or other such silliness like favorite movie quotes, favorite weapons and specialties. Specialties....?....like, maybe I live with my mother and will never know the gossamer tingle of a woman's soft breath on my cheek. See, we all can laugh at something.

I know several reenactors who have gone over and are back at the game here, and none have pretensions or complain. I do realize that, as willysmb44 stated that those who have really jumped will lord it over those in their little airborne cabal who have not. However, I might expand upon that with the point that the louder the vet, the less they may have done. There is one guy here in the South who never completed Jump school, but refuses to do any other impression..."hey man, I only do airborne". Or the guys who went to jump school whilst in ROTC and never had the opportunity to heave inside of a Herc doing NOE. Lotsa guys who have been nowhere and done nothing. I have been to the cool schools in the Army, but never felt the whisper of a round passing me in anger. Always in a different place when the others left, and anyone who has served but lost pals in a fight that they did not attend will agree that they wish they had been there.

So, help the geeky newbies, for they might be in your place one day...or end up in one of those really cool units with the great website, a cool nickname like "Bulldozer" toting a dewat BAR, and a 20 stone SGM.

Hey, there you go, someone should recreate Sgt Fury's Hollwin' Commandos, or the other Easy Co., with it's Combat Happy Joes and Sgt. Rock! Always wanted to paint stripes on my steel pot. Gotta have the Iron Major too! Maybe we have them already. There will be the goofy comic book types, but let's not behave as they do. And if there is animus towards Abn and SS, remember, there has to be a place for the sheep to flock, for the followers, for those who need to belong. There, use that next time! And remember, before you were the scion of accuracy that you are today, that you could have been the guy at his first event wearing ...GASP...sneakers, or that kinda farby east-German conversion that you thought was so great when purchased. We all start somewhere, and I was crying my first night of Basic Training, like all the others.....:)

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It would be great if The Pacific actually was an inspiration to get people to do PTO. Personally I'd love to do it, but I would do Army since I refuse to wear a Marine uniform.

Interesting attitude for a guy code-named 2nd Inf Div---I thought the original 2nd Infantry division was formed in 1917 with a Marine brigade and and an Army Brigade ...talk about a nice lineage...

s/f

Al

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