Its a bird! Its a plane! Wait -- its Care2's Flutterfrog!
Last month Care2.com competed in one of the most talked about competitions around the Redbull Flugtag - a contest to build human powered flying machines and launch them off a pier. (Teams were judged on flying the farthest, demonstrating the most creativity, and exhibiting the best showmanship, all the while staying somewhat afloat.)
TV20's Your Green Life interviewed Care2 about its eco-friendly entry made out of bamboo, hemp, paper mache, and recycled bicycle parts. (Check out the video here)
The 350-pound FlutterFrog really did fly off that pier, floating like a butterfly into the murky greenish brown river and landing incredibly gracefully, especially compared to the other flying contraptions, which smashed and scattered across the water upon impact (youch that had to hurt!).
The FlutterFrog, with its wingspan of 28.5 feet, managed to fly a whopping 40 feet before splashing into the river. We were all relieved when pilot Alex arose to the surface of the choppy water and made it back to land completely unscathed.
Scoring extremely well, the Care2.com team received a 7 (out of 10) from each one of the judges. Whoohoo! (The winning team flew 62 feet overall, and used a sort of hang glider on the top of their big wheel flying machine to achieve the final distance creative, and allowed in the rules, but so not fair in my opinion.)
So while the Care2.com team didnt take the grand prize (yes, I stomped and protested briefly but in the end, I was a good sport about it), they definitely won the crowds affections. And according to the team, the entire experience was fabulous.
In fact, rumor has it they are already planning their next eco-friendly flying design for next year.
- Robyn Hessinger
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