SUN ’n FUN CAMPUS, LAKELAND, FL. – FedEx Express has donated a Boeing 727 to SUN ’n FUN to use as an interactive aviation classroom.
SUN ‘n FUN CEO and President John R. “Lites” Leenhouts commented that, “It is truly an honor for SUN ’n FUN to be recognized by the aviation industry giant FedEx as a credible air and space education center promoting the growth of aviation careers around the world. Their investment in SUN ’n FUN’s extensive year-round education programs that create pilots and mechanics is a testament to FedEx’s commitment to the future of flight. We at SUN’ n FUN and Central Florida Aerospace Academy are proud to be their partner in this ambitious endeavor.”
“As we retire this 727 from our fleet, we are proud to give back to the aviation community,” said David Sutton, managing director of Aircraft Acquisition and Sales for FedEx. “The donation of this aircraft by FedEx is just one example of the many ways we support educational endeavors, reflecting the community spirit shared by all FedEx employees in the communities where we live and work.”
This marks the 62nd FedEx donation of a Boeing 727 aircraft to various organizations for educational purposes since 2000. Before its final flight, the aircraft provided FedEx with more than 20 years of service transporting packages to destinations throughout the United States.
At SUN ‘n FUN, the aircraft will remain fully functional allowing students on aviation career paths to explore the cockpit or the mechanical aspects of the plane. The Florida Air Museum Center for Innovation and Exploration will be greatly enhanced by the Boeing 727 with two Pratt Whitney engines, said Lori Bradner, executive director of education at SUN ‘n FUN.
“This is a new era for STEM education and we are thrilled by the collaborative partnership with special permission given by FedEx to retain their name and colors on the aircraft alongside the SUN ‘n FUN logo,” she said. “We are proud to serve as the newest site for FedEx who has served as a leader in the aviation industry for over 40 years. The aircraft is not only a learning tool but an inspiration for students of all ages in the Central Florida Aviation Corridor.”
SUN ‘n FUN is not only an annual event and Florida’s largest convention, it is a year-round commitment to the future of aviation. Located at the Lakeland Linder Airport, the SUN ‘n FUN campus is the home of the Central Florida Aerospace Academy and the Florida Air Museum Center for Aviation Innovation and Exploration with educational training centers donated by the Tom Davis Foundation. Active aviation programs include Polk State College courses, the Lakeland AeroClub, Civil Air Patrol, Future Eagles, flight training schools, and an arm of Junior Air Force ROTC. STEMtastic aerospace Saturday camps, Destination Aviation and STEMtastic summer camps, Wings ‘n Things, Teacher In-Service workshops as well as public/private school aerospace outreach opportunities are offered year-round.
For more information: 863-904-4004 or Sun-n-Fun.org