Spotted in Santa Rosa
The Sonoma County Airport is located on the northwest side of Santa Rosa, and is named after one of the city’s most famous residents, Charles M. Schulz, creator of the long-running Peanuts comic strip. Although the airport is small, it has popular direct flights to and from Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Portland and Seattle.
Schulz was born and raised in Minnesota, but in 1969 moved to Santa Rosa and lived there until his death Feb. 12, 2000. Bronze statues of Charlie Brown and Linus were dedicated to the airport in 2007 and funded through Peanuts on Parade Sculpture Auctions. I was lucky enough to paint one of the 5-foot tall Charlie Brown sculptures for display as well as for the fundraising event. The Auction raked in about $300,000, with my entry fetching $15,000. The bulk of proceeds were used to fund artistic scholarships.
The airport hosts Wings Over Wine Country Air Show each year in late August.
For more information about Healdsburg-based artist Richard Sheppard, visit theartistontheroad.com.