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Guest Speaker

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Reflections On Inner & Outer Flight


Reaching beyond self-imposed limitations

Reflections On Inner & Outer FlightWhy are we so fascinated by flight? What draws us to it? What makes flight so special?
Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Bringing The “Sport” Back To Flying (Kirk Hawkins)


Appealing to the emotional rather than the practical may be the key to revitalizing GA

Bringing The “Sport” Back To Flying (Kirk Hawkins)In 2004, the FAA passed what has been called the “biggest change in aviation in 50 years”—it created the LSA category and sport pilot license. “So what?” you ask. You’ve already got your private, commercial, instrument, CFI and MEI ratings, and your Eagle Scout Badge.
Thursday, June 11, 2009

2009 National CFI of the Year


Improving the learning process

2009 National CFI of the YearRecently, a VFR pilot flying a Cessna 172 departed after dark in VMC and flew into IMC. Shortly after takeoff, the pilot reported an electrical failure to ATC, but continued into a thickening blanket of fog.
Friday, May 1, 2009

Smoke On!


Pushing my Edge to the edge over the Danube

Smoke On!It’s hot in this race plane…even at 1,000 feet…or is it just me? My mouth is dry and my heart is racing as I watch the competitor before me twisting his way through the track.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Protecting Kenya’s National Parks


Training the Kenya Wildlife Service Airwing

Protecting Kenya’s National ParksI often wear a little leather choker with two bronze elephant tusks. I picked it up a few years ago in a Nairobi gallery called Matt Bronze, and it reminds me of the wild things that still live in Kenya.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Personal Aviation At A Crossroads


Looking back and moving forward

Personal Aviation At A CrossroadsFive years ago, the first special light-sport aircraft (S-LSA) received its airworthiness certificate, opening up a new chapter in the regulation of simple personal flight. More than 1,000 of these factory-built aircraft and more than 8,000 former ultralights (experimental light-sport aircraft, E-LSA) are now flying under the sport pilot and LSA category.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Gaining Your Pilot’s License


An opportunity to see the world from a different perspective

Gaining Your Pilot’s LicenseLeonardo da Vinci once said, “For once you have tasted flight, you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return.” There are more than 600,000 registered pilots in the United States, and each of them can relate to this quote.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008

2008 Reno Air Races


Evolution of the Jet Class

2008 Reno Air RacesIn 2001, “the year that never was,” I was part of the initial attempt to race jet airplanes in the Reno Air Races.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008

GA & The Environment


Keeping our skies clean

GA & The EnvironmentEnvironmental awareness across the globe is becoming increasingly acute. The global media and the world’s population are increasingly focused on climate change and the extent to which aviation contributes to it. The general aviation manufacturing industry wants to actively participate in this discussion to speed the introduction of innovative technology and flight procedures that will reduce aviation’s impact on the environment.
Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Back To The Future!


Indeed, the future is incredible

guest speakerI love movies! I especially enjoy it when writers use their imaginations to create futuristic technology. For example, do you remember 1985’s Back to the Future with Michael J. Fox as Marty McFly? He finds himself traveling back in time with the help of a DeLorean car that’s converted to a time machine by his mad scientist friend, played by Christopher Lloyd.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Why I Go to Oshkosh


It’s personality, not flying skills

 Why I Go to OshkoshEvery other summer or so, as I fly north with friends over the lush immensity of southern Wisconsin, find Ripon and then push along the railroad tracks, a sensation of satisfaction and memory overtakes me as the skyline of Lake Winnebago fills the windshield. I realize then that I don’t fly into Oshkosh just for the usual reasons—the air shows, strolling the avionics bazaars, enjoying the epic storytelling of Rod Machado. To me Oshkosh is a celebration of personality and spirit.
Sunday, June 1, 2008

State Of The LSA Industry


The future looks bright

State Of The LSA IndustryAt the 2005 AOPA Convention, barely six months after the first light-sport aircraft (LSA) airworthiness certificates were issued, AOPA President Phil Boyer observed, "This has got to be one of the most interesting things you can do: help bring a whole new segment of aviation to market."
Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Ab Initio Training With A Touch Of Glass


The benefits of glass-cockpit experience

Ab Initio Training With A Touch Of GlassIf you were to drive across the country, you could point your car in the right direction and eventually you’d get to your destination, though perhaps not by a straight-line route. Before leaving, you’d need to consult a map to ensure that you’re heading in the right direction and don’t get lost. Likewise, to get your first airline job, it’s best to have a carefully thought-out plan so that you get where you want in the shortest amount of time. Increasingly, that means adding glass-cockpit experience to your checklist.
Saturday, March 1, 2008

Fathers, Sons And Flying


A CNN correspondent reflects on flying as a family affair

Fathers, Sons And FlyingFor me, it all began a few thousand feet over some Michigan farmland about 40 years ago. We were somewhere between Detroit and Alpena when my father gave me a heading, told me to keep it straight and level, and then let me grab the yoke. I’ll never forget the joy I felt when that 172 began responding to my whims. It was love at first flight.
Friday, February 1, 2008

What Compels An Air Show Pilot?


It’s dangerous. It’s competitive. And it’s hard on the body. So why fly hardcore aerobatics?

What Compels An Air Show Pilot?Explaining why I do what I do is surprisingly easy. The quick answer is that flying air shows is what I’m passionate about. I love it. But beyond that is a story of inspiration, physical endeavor, ongoing learning and camaraderie.
Tuesday, January 1, 2008

State Of The Industry


Keep aviation vital and strong

State Of The IndustryFrom the Wright brothers to The Right Stuff, the thrill of flight has sparked the imagination and stirred the human spirit. We take to the skies to experience the freedom and exhilaration of flight. Now more than ever, people look to general aviation as a way to speed travel and increase business. Consequently, it’s important for those of us who love general aviation to step back and examine the health and strength of this great industry.
Saturday, December 1, 2007

Endangered Species?


Aviation is facing increasing pressure—is it time for an altitude change?

Endangered Species?The end is near! For hundreds and perhaps thousands of years, humans have been making predictions about the end. The end of the earth, the end of cheap oil, the end of life as we know it, the end of free WiFi—I hate this kind of gloom and doom stuff.