EAA 551’s Mark Priglmeier, who may be GA’s best ambassador, recently sent us a note, telling us of a wonderful aviation experience that started, unhappily enough, with a mechanical issue: “Alright all you aviation buffs, what are some things we look for when we fly somewhere? Convenient lodging, dining, attractions, and shopping top my list. Especially when one does need a vehicle to do all of this. Well my friends, my daughter and I have found that place: Hillsboro, Wis.
While en-route to Oshkosh Airventure 2011, my daughter Lainey and I experienced a mechanical issue which prompted a diversion to an airport located in the Southwestern hills of Wisconsin (HBW). Little did we know what we might find. As it turned out, we found it all!
From that first call to to the local hotel (Hotel Hillsboro), I just had a feeling this was going to be a nice place. We arrived with the intent to have repairs done on our aircraft the following day then be on our way. As it turned out…we loved Hillsboro so much we stayed for four nights!
The Hotel Hillsboro is a very nice hotel with a wonderful staff. They even took care of our most treasured items…Blanket and Bear. They were laid out in such a careful, precious fashion on the bed that the scene would have made for a fine hotel commercial. Priceless. Appreciated. Meaningful. Memorable.Attached to the hotel was another fine establishment: Beezers Bar and Grill. Good food, drinks, outdoor patio and great service. OK, so far we have: Lodging, bar and restaurant, pool, hot tub…all within a stone’s throw from the runway. Good you say? It gets better. Right next to the hotel resides Subway. (And a Dollar General store for items you may have forgotten).
Fly on into Hillsboro airport, walk around, go biking, check out the lake, the dam, the downtown area, and all that this city has to offer. Don’t forget to stop in at the City of Hillsboro office and let them know how valuable their airport is. Because of their airport, my 8-year-old daughter and I shared memories that will last us for a lifetime.
And you may be wondering, did they eventually make it to Oshkosh Airventure 2011? Yes we did! Kind of like icing on the cake. We could have not asked for more. What an absolutely wonderful vacation. When a certain seemingly unfortunate situation can end up being a blessing in disguise…life does not get any better.
Thank you Hillsboro! Your city offers the aviating community a perfectly located airport in a most scenic locale. Truly a gem to be treasured. It is bittersweet that I write this. Hillsboro is one of those towns that provide a quaint, relaxing, small town atmosphere with such wonderful people and places of business that one should keep it a secret. But you, my aviating friends, are my family. Enjoy.
Will we go back to Hillsoboro? Absolutely without a doubt.”