Felix Cartagena's Adventures
on Planet Earth
"My Friend Felix”
This past fall, I received the following e-mail out of the blue ...
My name is Felix Cartagena and I live in New Castle, Delaware USA. I began kite flying on Nantucket Island off of Cape Cod Massachusetts in 1973. I bought my first kites as an adult from Al Hartig, the Nantucket Kiteman. In 1979 I became a member of The Maryland Kite Society and The AKA. Later I belonged to a number of other kite clubs. I was active in editing the MKS Windy Notice and have written articles for the AKA, many club bulletins, and KiteLines Magazine. I was Retreat Shepard/Planner for the MKS Kite Retreat a number of times and presented numerous workshops at these events. Additionally, I have done LOTS of kite workshops for community groups such as boy scouts, girl scouts, schools, museums, state parks, and senior centers. I am also well known for the bubble machines that I bring to kite festivals, which besides showing what the ground wind is doing, keeps the youngsters occupied. Along the way I have accumulated a large collection of kite books, magazines, news letters and more.
I have been whittling down a lot of my collections, not just the kites. I actually fly very little these days and only my smaller kites. The arthritis in my hands makes it very painful to handle the larger kites. My kite library resides on 3 shelves of a book case and the jewel of the collection, a complete set of KiteLines Magazines, in a file box with folders containing 4 issues each. There are AKA News/Kitings from 1979 to 2009 but nowhere near complete. There are also a lot of kite club newsletters from various clubs. There are many out of print kite books as well as books in Chinese, Japanese, German, Dutch, French, Italian, Swedish, Finnish, Portuguese (Brazil), Hungarian and even Hebrew.
The very first issue of KiteLines has an article on Paul Garber... I was lucky enough to get him to autograph it! At least 2 of the older books have been autographed by him also.
So... where is this all going? I have been looking for a recipient to donate my library to. So... I would like to offer you my kite library collection. When was the last time a complete set of KiteLines available?
After you pick yourself off the floor and catch your breath, let me know if you are interested. We can work out the details later. I can see by your Museum web site that you are in this for the long run. I want my books to go where they will be used and available for consultation. Thanks for letting me bend your ear........................... Felix
Hmm..... So who was this Felix? AKA "Samurai Kite Flyer" AKA "Mr. Bubbles"
I decided that the best thing to do was to drive 9 hours to Delaware and find out.
Stay tuned for my story about my trip to meet this fascinating soul....
Felix also provided the inspiration to launch the historical kite symposiums - thanks Felix.
Here is a peek into the man