The Catalina Island Conservancy’s pilots support group has become the newly reenergized Catalina Aero Club. The revitalized group was conceived among pilots during last year’s 50th anniversary celebration of general aviation on the island that brought 150 pilots and a crowd of more than 400 to the Airport in the Sky.
“There was a new-found sense of excitement and a bit of nostalgia for what Catalina has meant to pilots all over the Southland,” said Mike Sullivan, who is serving as the club’s inaugural president.
“I am thrilled to see the pilots who make Catalina one of their most popular destinations want to redefine their commitment to the protection and recreation of the island through their membership in the new Catalina Aero Club,” said Conservancy President Ann Muscat.
Along with a new name comes new benefits with Conservancy membership.
“Probably the biggest request we get from pilots is having to pay landing fees at the Airport in the Sky,” Sullivan said. Currently, landing fees are $25.
“Pilots who join the Catalina Aero Club will take advantage of free unlimited landing privileges*,” Sullivan continued. “That can really add up for aviators who love Catalina and enjoy the thrill of landing at one of the most unique airports in the world.”
To give pilots and their passengers a break getting from the Airport in the Sky to Avalon, another benefit is 20% off the Wildlands Express shuttle service, in addition to a free Killer Cookie with every $10 food purchase at the airport’s DC-3 Gifts and Grill. Other benefits include: one annual Freewheeler bike pass, 50% off Conservancy campground fees, and a complimentary subscription to the Conservancy Times newsletter and UPDATE Online E-newsletter.
New Catalina Aero Club members can join for an annual membership into the Conservancy for $150. Current Conservancy members who would like to upgrade to the Aero Club can do so and extend their membership for $115. Current Leadership Circle members can now enjoy unlimited free landings at Airport in the Sky.
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VICTOR ONEILL says
Although I fly out of the South Bay I quit going to Catalina when the increased landing fees and inconvenience of getting to town made it apparent Catalina was not interested in promoting general aviation.