“The Selfridge International Guard base is one of the oldest and most historic airfields in the United States.”
- Steven J. Mrozek, Executive Director of Selfridge Military Air Museum
In late September the Selfridge Air National Guard Base announced plans for constructing a new education aviation center that is slated to open in the summer of 2022. For those who are unfamiliar, the military base is located in Harrison Twp, sitting on the border between Chesterfield Twp and Clinton Twp. It has operated as an air force base since 1917 under the National Guard, but it wasn’t until 1975 that the Selfridge Military Air Museum was created, alongside the Michigan Air Guard Historical Association (MAGHA). It is because of the museum and MAGHA that this new center is being constructed today.
The education aviation center will consist of a classroom, demonstration area and even restored 1943 World War II fighter jets. The students and others who visit will be able to learn about many different types of aircrafts, such as rotary wing aircraft, fixed wing aircraft, non-powered aircraft and lighter-than-air aircraft. They will also have opportunities to interact with aviators and be exposed to potential career opportunities in the field.
The center itself will have lots of hands-on teaching to help students learn about physics and what goes into maintaining and flying an aircraft. The facility will utilize the museum’s collection of over 100 years worth of artifacts, jets, planes, etc. to reflect real-life, tangible examples of engineering and design. Another amazing function of this new education center is the multimedia instructional capabilities that it will present to its visitors.
Beside the soon-to-be-constructed center is the Early Aviation and WWI museum hanger that is already adorned with replicas and artifacts of the First World War and sometime before it. The patch of land next door is the air park where you will find about 40 types of aircrafts on display, accompanied by informational plaques that detail their origins and history. To find more information on how you can visit the museum and its amazing collection of aircrafts, click here.
The Selfridge Air National Guard Base, and the Selfridge Military Air Museum by extension, truly is a source of pride for Macomb County and Michigan, with a long and fulfilling history of giving back to the community and showcasing their aviation pride. The upcoming education center is just one of the many ways they’ve showcased the respect they have for the aviation field and its history.
Rachel Dearing is an intern for Macomb County Planning and Economic Development