PUYALLUP, Wash. – The Northwest Aviation Conference & Trade Show included a first this year. The inaugural Aviation Business & Career Forum kicked off the 30th annual conference on Friday. The forum was organized to offer a venue for people interested in the aviation industry to learn more about it, and for those already working in the industry to network, discuss some best practices and ideas.
Forty presenters signed up to host a variety of business and careers sessions. I counted 40-45 sub-21-year-olds at the opening session. While that may not sound like a large number, remember, this was the forum’s first year, plus each paid $35 to attend. This should be a popular future addition to the annual February conference.
This year, the conference included 75 hours of Aviation Seminars, a Mountain & Canyon Flying Workshop by Lori MacNichol, IA Maintenance Seminars, a Seaplane Safety Workshop, a Helicopter Pilot Workshop, plus a variety of Safety and Survival Presentations.
The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association showed up in numbers, as always. President Craig Fuller discussed the potential effect of sequestration on aviation as well as other assorted challenges facing general aviation.
Around the trade show floor, a good many vendors packed the hall. Many familiar faces and some new ones added to the mix.
Returning vendor, CubCrafters, coordinated with the Twin Oaks Airpark dealer to showcase a CarbonCub kit in the expo hall (pictured). Cirrus Aircraft brought in its SR22 Generation Five mock-up, Hillsboro Aviation brought a helicopter as did Atomic Helicopter. A pair of sailplanes also fit nicely into the corner of the expo hall.
Electroair reportedly sold four electronic ignition units on Saturday. Apparently more pilots are interested in burning 10-15% less fuel when flying. AeroCinema showed off some of its 400+ aviation videos and documentaries. Interestingly, “The Aviation Channel” is offering streaming access, think Netflix, for $6 a month or $60 a year.
Next year’s Northwest Aviation Conference is already on the calendar for Feb. 22-23, 2014.