Adelaide Kite Festival 2011

A Photo of Every Kite
(Up on Saturday)

Well, that was about 90% of the kites flown by registered flyers anyway! The Adelaide Kite Festival 2011 had a slightly different feel this year, since it was organized by a different bunch of people. A different voice was on the microphone.

However, all the usual kites were there. I remarked to my wife as we approached the beach that I seemed to recognize just about every kite in the air! This is our fourth attendance at this event, so perhaps that's not surprising.

From the starting time of 12 noon onward, the number of kites in the air steadily grew. Overall, the size of the "kite cloud" seemed down a bit on previous years. However, flying lines were fairly short, which kept most of the spectacular flying creations closer to the jetty. This was great for spectators and great for kite-site webmasters with digital cameras ;-)

The winds were not exactly ideal for a festival, being a little on the light side for many of the kites. In fact, in the early afternoon, a prolonged lull brought down many of the most spectacular kites. Later, there were short periods where the row of banners on the jetty would start flapping furiously and noisily as a fresh breeze came in from the south.

Come to think of it, the combined noise of the very long row of banners made quite an effective anemometer. That's a wind-speed meter. All you would need would be a decibel meter, calibrated appropriately on a new scale. And take the readings far away from the PA speakers pumping out music and commentary eermm getting off track here aren't we... Back to the kites!

As is my custom with reporting this kite festival, I have decided on a different approach. This time round, it was possible to get a half-decent shot of nearly every individual registered kite! Hence this page is a photo gallery featuring nearly every kite that took to the air on the "official" side of the jetty. The pics are in no particular order, although some of the best shots are near the top of each section.



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On this site, there's more kite-making info than you can poke a stick at :-)

Want to know the most convenient way of using it all?

The Big MBK E-book Bundle is a collection of downloads—printable PDF files which provide step-by-step instructions for many kites large and small.

Every kite in every MBK series.


Adelaide Kite Festival
Down the Jetty

Adelaide Kite Festival 2011 -  dancing tube menIt's hard to ignore something like this waving at you

I'm just setting the scene here, before going down the jetty and zeroing-in on various kites. See all the noisy banners over on the far left.

Adelaide Kite Festival

I can't recall this one from previous festivals, but it probably has been on show before. It certainly shows up nicely against gray cloud.

Pink and blue Delta kite.

The Phoenix delta—a familiar sight to festival regulars!

Firebird delta kite with pale blue leading edges.

An interesting understated design, this nice kite is another festival regular.

Delta kit, light green with brown veins

A colorful sun-burst design features on this well-tailed delta. That wavy trailing edge is unusual too.

Multi-colored Delta kite with tails.

Another colorful delta soars with geometric design. It's familiar from years gone by.

Delta, colorful geometric design


Adelaide Kite Festival
Flowforms, Sled

A good-looking flowform kite is tethered close to the ground. It's quite a large size.

A good-looking Flowform kite.

A fairly large sled with ram-air spars hovers. It's super stable and rather neat and tidy.

Sled kite with ram air spars.

This is a familiar sled from previous festivals, featuring a simple but attractive color scheme.

Large blue and light green Sled kite with wide ribbon tail.

How's this big flowform with matching tail, tasteful in blue and pink. (No, I've never worked as a fashion commentator.)

Flowform, pink and blue.

Here's another sizable flowform with tubular tail.

Flowform kite with 3 keels and tubular tail.

OK, the pink spotted thing that ermm ... may appear attractive to some. Was that diplomatic enough? Anyway—those large drogues were spinners and certainly grabbed your attention!

Flowform kite, pink with polka dots and twin rotating drogues.


Adelaide Kite Festival

Inflatable kit, huge green frog.

A magnificent huge frog floats. It could be over a thousand dollar's worth and a great inclusion in any large kite festival. It's a real crowd-pleaser.

Frill-necked lizard iInflatable kite.

Equally or even more impressive was this large inflatable—a frill-necked lizard I believe. Incredible! Although not a bulky design, it was clearly longer than the frog.

This is somewhat hard to categorize, but I'm pretty sure those are air intakes at the front. So that's some kind of inflatable. It was like a giant version of those little kids' flat dragon kites with the long flowing tails. This was possibly the longest kite in the sky on Saturday. Quite impressive!

A very long flat Dragon kite with colorful striped tail.

Talking about impressive inflatables, here is the trademark Adelaide International Kite Festival kite—the huge killer whale. There are just so many photos of this thing floating around (sorry) online. One more won't hurt, will it.

The large killer whale inflatable.

Pink salmon anyone? This is quite a large and eye-catching kite but needs more than a light breeze to really fly well. With that color, it wouldn't be hard to spot against just about any background.

Inflatable kite - a large pink fish.

This well-endowed mermaid makes an appearance every year the festival is on, it seems. There's a photo of it on our Festival 2007 page! It was one of the largest inflatables to be seen here.

Buxom mermaid kite.

My wife pestered me to get a photo of this penguin. There's nothing like a touch of humor to brighten up a kite festival!

Inflatable kite - a humorous flat penguin.

On the subject of humor, how about this magnificent set of kicking soccer legs! I can't remember if they were using the matching soccer ball drogue this time.

Inflatable kite - humorous kicking legs.


This giant UFO kite has often made an appearance at this event.

Did I say the killer whale was the trademark kite for this event? Actually, it's a toss-up between the whale and this big UFO kite! In earlier festivals it was used to cast shade over the hard-working commentator.

Adelaide Kite Festival

The striking geometric design on this kite is illuminated from behind in this shot. Also, the darker outside edge of the kite doesn't contrast much with the deep blue of the sky, further emphasizing the artwork in the middle. A great rok!

Big Rokkaku kite with 3D illusion design.

Here's another great-looking rokkaku and also in a very substantial size. It's maybe 2 meters (8 feet) tall? The owners were just in the process of launching when I took this shot, from the jetty.

Large Rokkaku, featuring a rising sun design.


Adelaide Kite Festival
Sport Kites

This was just one of a number of large delta sport kites on display. The pilot knew what he was doing, making very low passes over the wet sand. He even dragged a tip in it briefly. Oooops. One of these was a trick kite, which was flipped and swung through a series of uhmmm tricky maneuvers.

A big Delta sport kite.

Here's a great-looking quad kite, doing its thing over the sand.

A black and flouro green quad kite in flight.


A blue and black stunt quad kite.

This freighter is out in the gulf, being towed by a giant computer-controlled quad, thus saving heaps of fuel. Just kidding. It is another nice quad though.

Adelaide Kite Festival
Boxes and Cellulars

A big and beautiful Cody sits steady. Thank goodness the sun came out to light it all up like that. Love the high-visibility yellow!

Big orange Cody War Kite replica.

We don't have other photos of this purple winged box kite, but I bet it's been here before. It's an interesting design, particularly with that dihedral built into those outer panels. It seemed like a very stable flyer.

Light purple winged box kite.

Here's another good-looking Cody. It's a pity this shot ended up out of focus. My wife took it actually... No, really!

Black and red Cody kite.

This very unusual kite barely qualifies as a cellular. It does seem to have a few cells in the middle of the upper section there. It flew pretty well and must have easily grabbed its share of attention from onlookers.

Update in 2012: It might be an EO6 with an Atom attached as a tail.

EO6 and Atom kites in combination


Adelaide Kite Festival
Everything Else!

Here's an awesome dragonfly kite. Unfortunately, it was a bit far away from the jetty, and the sky was still fairly overcast when this photo was taken.

Dragonfly kite.

Should this have gone with the other inflatables? Not really, since it doesn't fly! It's something different though. After interviewing Anthony Thyssen, who once made something similar with diamond shapes, I now realize that this kind of thing represents a lot of time and effort for an individual. There are so many stitches.

Inflatable sphere with hexagonal and pentagonal patches.

This is a circoflex. It's just weird how it manages to hover in the air like that. See how the downwind edge has a slightly smaller circumference than the leading edge. That keeps the whole thing slightly pressurized and enables it to fly stable. These take quite a while to make too!

Colorful Circoflex kite.

Here, a kite messenger is on its way up the flying line of a large delta. If you are wondering what the payload was, just see the next photo.

A kite messenger on its way up the line.

A parachuting teddy! The kids love this of course, but it prompted a guffaw or two from some adults too, when it descended to the sand.

The parachuting Teddy in mid-drop.


I hope you enjoyed this mainly photographic coverage of the Adelaide Kite Festival 2011.

To finish off with, here's the first lolly drop of the day. Instead of a teddy, dozens of sweets with little "parachutes" attached are taken up by the kite messenger then released. Maybe some of those adults were under instructions from their children:



As mentioned earlier, there's more kite-making on this site than you can poke a stick at :-)

Want to know the most convenient way of using it all?

The Big MBK E-book Bundle is a collection of downloads—printable PDF files which provide step-by-step instructions for many kites large and small.

Every kite in every MBK series.