Amidst this year’s airshow season and continuing extreme/destructive weather, I wonder if aviation events are fully prepared. The National Weather Service’s Storm Ready program can help event organizers minimize weather catastrophes like 2011’s SUN ’n FUN tornado or the multi-fatality Indiana State Fair stage collapse. But how many fly-ins and airshows are so prepared?
Story and Photos By JEAN-PIERRE BONIN
I like to call myself an aviation freak.
Though I never became a pilot, I have been an aviation lover since I was a teenager, but it was not until some decades later that I stumbled into general aviation. In 2000, a neighbor began building a Ultravia Pelican Sport 600 kit plane in his garage and that was the start of a whole new era for me.
From an aircraft photographer, attempting, like others, to upload some pictures to websites like Airliners.net, I slowly began to widen my interest (and contacts), making me a more complete aviation photographer. Through the last 10 years or so, I have witnessed the true Spirit of Flight as pilots, owners, mechanics and just “plane” volunteers have shared their passion with me.
Where2 Interactive has launched SocialFlight, a free mobile app that provides pilots with an interactive map of aviation events.
Gyroplanes, gyrocopters, helicopters and autogyros, including other sport and general aviation aircraft, will gather at the Mentone Airport (C-92) in Indiana, July 31 through Aug. 4 for the 50th annual convention of the Popular Rotorcraft Association.
The Aviation Fuel Club is organizing a special event called “Unleaded to Oshkosh” — U2OSH — for the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2012. The purpose of the event is to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the FAA’s approval of the first autogas STC, an effort led in part by EAA founder Paul Poberezny. All pilots flying aircraft to Oshkosh that are capable of operating on autogas will be given special recognition. Awards will be given for the longest distance traveled, oldest/newest aircraft and smallest/largest aircraft flown using lead-free autogas.
If you’re reading this post, you can be fairly sure that you’re an aviation enthusiast. You might be a pilot, but you might not be, too.
Believe it or not, there are massive numbers of people scattered across the globe who are aviation enthusiasts, yet who don’t personally feel the need to grasp the controls and guide a machine through the air. There’s no contradiction there. Not all NASCAR fans rush the pits to force their way into a car so they can experience the big banked turns of Daytona first hand.
Warbirds Over Whiteside will be held at the Whiteside County Airport in Rock Falls, Ill., July 20-22. Owners of all types of warbird-type airplanes are invited to share in the festivities and comradry. To register your aircraft for our event, or to find out more information, go to WarbirdsOverWhiteside.com.
BY MATT FERRARI
What a gift it is to fly. To fly and write is an even greater gift. For those of us who find our home in the sky, we have been graced with fellow aviators who have taken the time to put pen to paper to deliver us, through words, back to our place of belonging.
In the pages of their books these “skywriters” will take you along in the cockpit with the crew of a stricken airliner en route from Honolulu to San Francisco in Ernest K. Gann’s “The High and The Mighty” [Read more…]
Following the retirement of long-time Sun ’n Fun chairman Bill Eickhoff, the Sun ’n Fun board of directors has elected Bob Knight, president of Knight Industrial Equipment of Lakeland, Fla., as the new chairman.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has set the preliminary agenda for a one-day hearing on airshow and air race safety. The hearing, which is open to all and free to attend (there is no registration), will be held Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2012.