Since 1948, pilots have landed at the Estherville Airport on the 4th of July.
 
"These were a big tradition back when planes were a new thing. It used to just be pilots and it was a way to get pilots to come to your town and they would bus some into town and have them have breakfast in town and then it turned into more of a community event where we can work with all these pilots you come in from out of town we have all sorts of Estherville people too so it's really kind of a fun mix to get the pilots and community members together," Executive Director of the Estherville Chamber of Commerce, Lexie Ruter said.
 
The celebration wouldn't be possible without volunteers some of whom have been around for almost every breakfast.
 
"I think that's part of our job to pay our community rent and even though I am retired and have been retired for considerable amount of time, I still feel a part of the community and continue to live here even in retirement," volunteer Dr. Richard Lepird said.
 
"We usually get a great turnout we usually have over 1200 people come out every year," Ruter added.
 
"To me it's satisfying because Estherville even though being a smaller community in Iowa it still thrives it still is very hospitable and it's just a nice place to live," Dr. Lepird said.
 
With Armstrong & Lake Okoboji only minutes away the fly-in breakfast is just the kickoff for area celebrations.

--KEYC News 12