By the numbers

We all have a lot of numbers thrown at us every day. A few numbers I’ve heard in the last few weeks are worrying, but I’ve also heard some numbers that give me hope.

From Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association President Craig Fuller at the Southeast Aviation Expo in Greenville, S.C., last month: Over the last 20 years, the pilot population in the United States has dropped from 800,000 to 600,000 — and it keeps shrinking.

It gets worse: [Read more…]

Join the club

JamieBeckettHeadshot

The subject of flying clubs and their relative merit has taken up space in this column before. I’m a believer. The idea of spreading the cost of ownership across eight or 10 or 12 partners in a flying club makes sense. And that’s to say nothing of the social aspects that can be so beneficial in a club atmosphere. The opportunity to have access to multiple club airplanes in exchange for a small investment is appealing, too. In short, clubs have a lot to offer the general aviation pilot.

[Read more…]

Compatible use

Recently my wife, kids, Mom and I all flew to Des Moines, Iowa, for the wedding of one of my cousins. While in Des Moines, we drove east to Newton to see where my Mom grew up. On our way in, I drove past the town so we could visit the Newton Municipal Airport (TNU). I remember flying in with Dad and Mom years ago as a kid and wanted to see it…30 years later.

[Read more…]

The saviors of general aviation

Latting-Lucas

Guest Editorial By MITCH LATTING and JOLIE LUCAS

Recently a critic of ours said that we “fly around the country acting like they are the saviors of general aviation.”

As we thought about this criticism, we had to admit there is some truth to the statement. We so strongly believe in promoting general aviation, we developed a presentation called PGA2: Promote General Aviation, Protect GA Airports. We have presented PGA2 at shows and conferences, including AirVenture, Women in Aviation, and the Mooney Aircraft Pilots Association, as well as to many pilot groups throughout California.

[Read more…]

Letter: KidVenture, 7-year-old key to getting AirVenture juices flowing again

Last week I wrote, “A suggestion for keeping the magic of AirVenture alive.” I’ve received a handful of emails thanking me for the post, some of which offered personal experiences. A few I’m still following up on, but following is what I received from Bill Middlebrook, president of Penn Yan Aero and longtime friend. Suffice it to say, his AirVenture juices are flowing once again, thanks to his 7-year-old son, Reece. Enjoy…

Sorry I missed you this year. I was keeping an eye out for you. I actually spent the show as as an observer this year with the family and spent very little time working the Penn Yan Aero booth.

I just read your article about the show and the naysayer. I have to say, boy are you right! Your insight is right on the money.  [Read more…]

What role does radio-controlled flying have in GA?

At the Arlington Fly-In in July I bought a Blade Scout radio-controlled (RC) helicopter. It’s a beginner-level RC. It’s also an absolute blast to fly.

Horizon Hobby was the exhibitor. “We are trying to reach new markets, that’s why we are here in Arlington,” said Kim Payne from Horizon Hobby. “We’ll be at AirVenture as well.” Both displays were packed with people every time I happened by.

[Read more…]