While Nobel prize winners and other great minds have come out of Northwest Indiana, Octave Chanute was arguably one of the greatest. In the year of 1896, he and his team pioneered the concept of human flight when portions of their biplane model were adopted by the Wright Brothers.
Chanute’s team practiced their biplane flights on the Indiana Dunes. The replica of the biplane glider is now being returned home to Northwest Indiana after being on display at the Chanute Air Museum in Rantoul, IL. The biplane will be the key feature in the Octave Chanute Biplane Glider Dream Memorial which will be housed at the Ivy Tech Community College, Gary Campus.
There seems to be no more fitting a place than Ivy Tech for the permanent home of possibly one of Northwest Indiana’s greatest innovations. The former chancellor of the college founded The Society of Innovators of Northwest Indiana in 2005 which works to recognize and honor minds like that of Octave Chanute. To date, The Society has inducted approximately 300 Members from the region.
The Society will be holding a dedication ceremony for the Chanute biplane on July 14 at the Ivy Tech Community College, Gary Campus. The event will start at 11 a.m. and will not only serve as a homecoming for the biplane, but also as a service to encourage future “innovators and entrepreneurs.” Specifically, the event will be dedicated as an Official Bicentennial Legacy Project; honor the late Richard Sussman, Ph.D., Chair Emeritus, The Society of Innovators for his contributions to The Society and the world; and inspire future dreamers, thinkers, doers, innovators and entrepreneurs.
The ceremony will be open to the public. For more information on attending, contact John Davies, Managing Director of The Society of Innovators at (219) 981-1111, ext. 2292.