WASP SoCal Mini-Reunion – Palm Desert California

Embassy Suites Palm Desert features a nice (included) breakfast and afternoon manager’s reception in a very comfortable lounge (the Oasis Room) just off of the pool. The SoCal Chapter of WASP WWII really enjoyed this location over the years and it is ideal for visiting with each other. The Main Event will be the Presentation of Jackie Cochran’s Congressional Gold Medal to her executor, Aldine Tarter, on September 29 at 3 o’clock, (44-300 San Pascual Ave., Palm Desert _ 760-773-3772) Program) with some speakers including pilot extraordinaire Jill "Raggz" Long (Lt Col, USAF) and other official attendees. That evening we will enjoy a reunion dinner and specially approved showing of the recently released feature movie PEARL which is the true story of a young woman in the 1930's (not Pearl Judd!) who became a pilot despite great difficulties, and became (at the time) the youngest licensed pilot in America. See Movie Web Site.

On the 30th, we will be travelling to the Palm Springs Air Museum where we will have a private tour, followed by lunch, and at 1PM a special showing of "Wings of Silver" a documentary on the WASP featuring local WASP Vi Cowden (Coachella Valley Pilot of the Year for her recent exploits!) Description of Wings of Silver. The evening program is still a bit up in the air (appropriate for the WASP) . . .


  • September 28
    - - Arrival in Palm Springs
    - - Check in to hotel
    - - 4:30 - 7 - Manager's reception - Oasis Lounge
    - - dinner on own
  • September 29
    - - Breakfast - - 10:00 - Walk of Stars Expedition wherein a few intrepid explorers will seek proof that Palm Springs still has Star power and to view the possible site of Jackie's Star
    - - 2:00 PM leave for the Atria (Please wear light clothing!)
    - - 3:00 PM Presentation ceremony of Jackie's Gold Medal in the Rose Garden (outdoors)
    - - 4:00 PM Ceremony Reception at the Atria (indoors)
    - - 6:30 Embassy Suites - Dinner
    - - 8:00 Showing of the movie PEARL - Oasis Room, Embassy Suites

  • September 30
    - - Breakfast at hotel
    - - 10:30 am - Leave ES for Palm Springs Air Museum
    - - Tour at Palm Springs Air Museum
    - - 1:00 PM - showing of Wings of Silver, documentary about the WASP featuring Vi Cowden, followed by discussion panel (
    - - 4:00 - 5:30 - Manager's Reception at Embassy Suites
    - - 7:00 Party at location to be announced with the musical stylings of Dot Swain Lewis and her honky tonk band.

  • October 1
    - - Breakfast at hotel - most leaving
    - - Field Trip to Idyllwild California for a little cool mountain air

    Embassy Suites Palm Desert

    74-700 Highway 111 - Palm Desert, CA 92260
    ph 760-340-6600 -- fx 760-340-6212 -

    Take a look at our Website:
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    UPCOMING: Plans being made to have national WASP Reunion in Febuary, 2011.
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    Advertising Copy for Thursday September 30th:

    Palm Springs Air Museum

    will be hosting the screening of a Documentary Film entitled: “Wings of Silver: The Vi Cowden Story”.

    When the country needed every man, She (and more than 1000 other women pilots) answered the call.

    In March of 2010 The United States awarded the Congressional Gold Medal – the highest award that a civilian can receive from Congress – to nearly 300 women, all over the age of 86.

    What is it that these women did to deserve such a prestigious decoration?

    “Wings of Silver: The Vi Cowden Story,” follows one 93-year-old woman’s journey from the Black Hills of South Dakota where she learned to fly biplanes, to flying fighter planes for the Army Air Corps in 1943 & ’44.

    Vi was among these first women in United States history to fly military planes.

    The Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) were not only crucial to the war effort during World War II, they also changed the course of Women’s history. The screening will take place in the PSAM theatre @ 1:00, 2:00, & 3:00 with an opportunity to meet various members of the WASP after the 1pm showing. Also on hand after each showing will be the documentary’s producers Mark and Christine Bonn to answer your questions and talk about their outstanding work. The screening of this documentary is included with the price of admission to the museum (members of the Coachella Valley Chapter of the 99s admitted for the discounted rate of $9 on this date).

    Visit to learn more about the film!