Thursday, September 29, 2011

Real 'Pan Amigos' to Reunite in Miami

Jaunted: Pan Am is back in on the air and the real-life pilots and flight attendants who inspired the ABC show are coming out of the woodwork... er, retirement.

In this Miami Herald rundown of the airline's ties to the city, we learn that there is a group of former Pan Am-ers who stay in touch via the Pan Amigo newsletter. And it's not restricted to former employees either—'industry friends' who'd like to stay in touch can also become Pan Amigos.

The group of old-timers are having a 'Worldwide Family Reunion' October 20-23 in Coconut Grove—to celebrate Pan Am and the centennial of aviation in Miami. According to the Herald, they're expecting members to come from Norway, London, Australia and Germany. (Reckon they'll spend the first hour comparing notes on the abysmal state of flying today? Or will it be all: "I'm Christina Ricci," "No, I am!"?)

For the regular plane spotters among us, there's another way you can get your Pan Am on in Miami: The University of Miami’s Otto G. Richter Library has a collection of 1,600 Pan Am documents and photos. The library regularly gets calls from people interested in learning more about the storied airline, including ABC producers who studied photos and plans from the archives before designing the terminal set for the show.

The Richter is a private research library, so unless you're a student or alum of The U, you'll have to call ahead and make an appointment to visit and gawk at the Pan Am ephemera. (Info on all that good stuff here).

Finally, if your Miami travels take you to the Opa-locka airport, you can feast your eyes on the restored 1958 DC-7B that was used in the filming of the show. It was actually operated by Eastern Airlines, but whatevs. There's nothing a little TV magic can't fix...

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